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Mukasey rejects call for special counsel in CIA interrogation videos probe

[JURIST] US Attorney General Michael Mukasey [official profile] said Friday that he does not plan to appoint a special counsel to investigate allegations that the US Central Intelligence Agency ordered the destruction of videotapes showing the interrogation of terror suspects [JURIST news archive], despite requests by some in Congress. At a press briefing, Mukasey said the investigation was opened merely on "some indication - which is a lot less than probable cause - some indication that there was any violation of any federal statute."

Earlier this month, US House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) [official website] sent a letter [text; JURIST report] to Mukasey urging him to either appoint the outside counsel, or to explain why he refrains from doing so. The Department of Justice announced its criminal probe [JURIST report] into the destruction of the tapes earlier this month. The CIA videotaped the interrogation of two al Qaeda suspects in 2002, but said that the tapes were destroyed in 2005 amid concerns that they could be leaked to the public and compromise the identities of the interrogators. AP has more.

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