Saturday, May 2, 2015

Anti-Torture Action Campaign: Day Four

The Honorable Loretta Lynch
Attorney General of the United States
US Department of Justice 
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001 

Subject: Reading the Senate Torture Report 
Dear Attorney General Lynch: 
The America we believe in does not torture. Yet for years, those who ordered and committed torture, enforced disappearance and other human rights violations in the CIA’s secret detention program have enjoyed impunity. That makes a mockery of the U.S. justice system. 
Recently, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence released to the public a summary of its 6,700 page report on these matters, known as the “Senate torture report.” It contains information about potential violations of federal and international law. 
But shockingly, the Justice Department has failed to commit to reading and reviewing the full report. In litigation the Justice Department has even said that its copies of the full report remain unread, in a sealed envelope.1 Presumably, no one at the Justice Department has even begun to read the full report—let alone take any action on any information it contains on human rights violations, including the crimes under international law of torture and enforced disappearance. 
That’s why, along with this letter, we are sending you a page, during each of the next ten days, for a total of 10 different pages of the de-classified report summary. 
Reading the report is just one step. The Department of Justice must also re-open and expand its investigations into all CIA interrogations, detentions and renditions. It must bring to justice in fair trials all the persons, regardless of their level of office or former level of office, suspected of being involved in the commission of crimes under international law, such as torture and enforced disappearance. 

Dr. Magda Ahmed, Amnesty International, member of Group 128
Amherst MA  
1 See Declaration of Peter J. Kadzik, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legislative Affairs, U.S. Department of Justice, ACLU v. CIA, Case 1:13--cv--01870 (filed January 21, 2015, D.D.C.). We are concerned that the Justice Department and other agencies are not opening the full report due to a cynical and hyper-technical effort to circumvent U.S. open records law (the Freedom of Information Act) and prevent the release of the full report to the public.

From Page 25:

As measured by the number of disseminated intelligence reports. Therefore, zero intelligence reports were disseminated based on information provided by seven of the 39 detainees known to have been subjected to the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques.

- May 30,2005, Memorandum for John A. Rizzo, Senior Deputy General Counsel, Central Intelligence Agency, from Steven G. Bradbury, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, Department of Justice, re; Application of United States Obligations Under Article 16 of The Convention Against Torture to Certain
Techniques that May Be Used in the Interrogation of High Value al Qaeda Detainees.

^Transcript of Senate Select Committee on Intelligence briefing, September 6, 2006.
This episode was not described in CIA cables, but was described in internal emails sent by personnel in the CIA Office of Medical Services and the CIA Office of General Counsel. A review of the videotapes of the interrogations of Abu Zubaydahby the CIA Office of Inspector General (OIG) did not note the incident. A review of the catalog of videotapes, however, found that recordings of a 21-hourperiod, which included two waterboarding sessions, were missing.

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