Sunday, December 09, 2007

Destroyed Videotapes Fail to Mask the Ugly Reality of Torture

8 Dec 2007 00:39 Africa/Lagos

Destroyed Videotapes Fail to Mask the Ugly Reality of Torture

Congress, Justice Department Must Investigate Destruction of Interrogation Videotapes

WASHINGTON, Dec. 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

The Open Society Policy Center (OSPC) today urged Congress to investigate the destruction of videotapes of interrogations by the Central Intelligence Agency and called for legislation requiring all CIA interrogations to be videotaped.

"This is truly a case in which a destroyed picture speaks a thousand words," said OSPC Deputy Director Stephen Rickard.

Intelligence experts believe that the CIA was afraid of how the public would react if they actually saw these interrogations in living color and knew that the tapes would provoke a strong reaction.

OSPC called on Congress to conduct oversight investigations into the destruction of the tapes and to legislate a requirement that all CIA interrogations be videotaped. It also demanded that the Justice Department investigate whether destroying the tapes amounted to a criminal offense.

"CIA Director Hayden was correct to state that the CIA created these tapes to make sure that CIA employees obeyed the law. Destroying the tapes undermined what America stands for. Congress should mandate that the CIA systematically videotape interrogations and retain them," said Rickard.

The Open Society Policy Center (OSPC) is a non-partisan organization that engages in policy advocacy on U.S. and international issues, including domestic civil liberties, multilateralism, economic development, civil rights, human rights, women's rights and criminal justice reform.

Source: Open Society Policy Center

CONTACT: Wendy Sefsaf of Open Society Policy Center, +1-202-721-5642

Nigerian Times Commentary:

US Intelligence Needs Insulation From Political Interference

Political Interference with the operations of the U.S. Intelligence will affect the progress of the C.I.A.

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