EU Governments must come clean on CIA torture programme
Following a request by the ALDE group, MEPs today heard statements by both the European Commission and the European Council on EU Governments’ involvement in the CIA’s torture programme. A resolution by the European Parliament on this matter will now be drafted for the February plenary session.
Speaking after the debate today, Cecilia Wikstrom MEP, ALDE Coordinator on the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties Committee said:
”The time for denial in Europe is over. The only way to ensure this will never happen again is if the EU Member States implicated in these gross human rights violations, including my own country Sweden, come clean about their involvement.”
Sophie in’t Veld, 1st Vice President of the ALDE Group and a former member of European Parliament’s Temporary Committee on the alleged use of European countries by the CIA for illegal activities (TDIP) commented:
”The former EU leaders who were members of the Five Eyes and Nine Eyes club, for example Tony Blair, must now be questioned about their knowledge and role in the CIA’s torture programme. Future prosecutions should not be ruled out, here or in the US.”
”To their eternal shame, we know that all Member States were to some extent involved, some more, some less, but all were aware of the main elements of the programme. Those countries should now come clean as well and show accountability for their actions.”
”The statements of the head of the European intelligence agency IntCen are very astonishing. He says that they have no way of knowing if information has been obtained through torture. It is high time IntCen sheds light on its activities, and it must be subject to parliamentary scrutiny as a matter of urgency.”
Angelika Mlinar MEP, a Vice President of the ALDE party commented:
”Besides being a mass violation of human rights, the CIA programme has created a vicious circle by giving extremists another reason to continue their campaigns of terrorism.
”EU Member States must set up national parliamentary inquiries in order to establish the extent of the involvement and/or knowledge of CIA torture.”