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EU delegation takes probe of CIA prisons to Romania

[JURIST] A European Parliament delegation [official website] met with Romanian lawmaker Norica Nicolai [official profile, in Romanian] on Tuesday as part of its ongoing investigation [JURIST news archive] into allegations that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) [official website] held terror suspects in secret prisons [COE materials] throughout eastern Europe as part of its rendition program [JURIST news archive]. Nicolai, who led Romania's investigation into CIA flights in the country, repeated denials [JURIST report] that Romania hosted detention centers or allowed detainee dropoffs, but she was unable to deny the possibility that detainees were transported through Romania on refueling stopovers. She reported that a review of European air traffic control documents indicated that while the planes were on Romania soil, no passengers left the planes and no foreigners entered them. Previously, Nicolai had stated that the committee had investigated every flight through Romania's five airports between 2001 and 2006 and found no irregularities or suspicious flights.

The visiting EU lawmakers are on a three-day fact-finding trip, meeting with Romanian intelligence heads, lawmakers, aviations authorities, journalists, and representatives of NGOs. Romania has become an epicenter for CIA abuse investigations since it and Poland [JURIST reports] were singled out as hosts to CIA prisons by a Council of Europe [official website] draft report [PDF text; JURIST report] in June. AP has more.

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