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article imageU.S. says rendition to continue, but with more oversight

By Andrew Moran     Aug 26, 2009 in Politics
The Obama administration will continue the former Bush administration's practice of rendition, which sends terrorist suspects to third nations for detention and interrogation, administration officials confirmed on Monday.
This latest move by the Obama administration comes the same week as the 2004 CIA report that described new details on certain tactics used by the CIA in interrogating terrorism detainees, according to The New York Times.
Administration officials, however, did elaborate that rendition continued would have a lot more oversight and monitor their treatment to insure that they are not tortured, which was confirmed by Attorney General John Holder, "The new policies proposed by the Task Force will allow us to draw the best personnel from across the government to conduct interrogations that will yield valuable intelligence and strengthen our national security. There is no tension between strengthening our national security and meeting our commitment to the rule of law, and these new policies will accomplish both," according to a Department of Justice report to the President; Special Task Force on Interrogations and Transfer Policies Issues Its Recommendations to the President.
Another administration official stated, "The emphasis will be on ensuring that individuals will not face torture if they are sent overseas."
Many groups are extremely disappointed by the Obama's administration continuing of rendition such as Amrit Singh, a lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union, who also tracked rendition cases under the Bush administration, who said, "It is extremely disappointing that the Obama administration is continuing the Bush administration practice of relying on diplomatic assurances, which have been proven completely ineffective in preventing torture."
One of the most extraordinary cases of rendition was back in 2003, United States officials believed that Maher Arar was a terrorist. Arar was a Canadian citizen who was sent to Syria to be tortured in many brutal ways. Later he was determined to be innocent of all charges.
In 2007, then-Senator Barack Obama condemned the administration's use of rendition. In Foreign Affairs, Sen. Obama wrote, "To build a better, freer world, we must first behave in ways that reflect the decency and aspirations of the American people. This means ending the practices of shipping away prisoners in the dead of night to be tortured in far-off countries, of detaining thousands without charge or trial, of maintaining a network of secret prisons to jail people beyond the reach of the law."
The history of rendition began under the Clinton administration but greatly expanded under George W. Bush after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. US officials would often send terrorist suspects to other nations in order to avoid Constitutional ramifications of their techniques.
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