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US Asked to Begin Criminal Investigation Following Bush Publication

U.S. Asked to Begin Criminal Investigation Following Bush Publication

Big News Network | November 16, 2010

Amnesty International has urged a criminal investigation into the role of former US President George W Bush and other officials in the use of “enhanced interrogation techniques” against detainees held in secret US custody.

In his memoirs, former President Bush has admitted to personal involvement in the authorization of “water-boarding” and other techniques against detainees.

Claudio Cordone, Senior Director at Amnesty International said: “Under international law, the former President’s admission to having authorized acts that amount to torture are enough to trigger the USA’s obligations to investigate his admissions and if substantiated, to prosecute him.”

Cordone added: “His admissions also highlight once again the absence of accountability for the crimes under international law of torture and enforced disappearance committed by the USA.”

In his memoirs, former President Bush focused on the cases of two detainees held in the secret programme.

Abu Zubaydah, who was held at various undisclosed locations from April 2002 to September 2006, was subjected to “water-boarding” in which water is used to begin the process of drowning, more than 80 times.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was arrested on 1 March 2003 in Pakistan and transferred to secret CIA custody.

That same month he was “water-boarded” 183 times, according to a report by the CIA Inspector General.

After three and a half years being held incommunicado in solitary confinement in secret locations, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was transferred to military custody in Guantánamo, where he and Abu Zubayhdah remain held without trial, along with more than 150 others.

Claudio Cordone said: “Under international law, anyone involved in torture must be brought to justice, and that does not exclude former President George W Bush. In the absence of a US investigation, other states must step in and carry out such an investigation themselves.”

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