The Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) supported a call from international rights groups on “the need to ensure accountability for the United States CIA torture programme”.
The call was submitted by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Centro de Estudios Legales y Sociales (CELS), Conectas Direitos Humanos, and the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA). Dozens more supported the call, alongside the EIPR.
The statement read that, while the US strongly supported the adoption of the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UNCAT), it fails “to hold accountable those responsible for the CIA programme of torture and enforced disappearance, to ensure the victims’ rights to truth and reparations, and to take other actions to ensure non-repetition of these heinous crimes leaves the US in violation of its own obligations under UNCAT.”
In December 2014, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence released a summary of its four-year investigation of the CIA’s detention and interrogation programmes.
While euphemisms such as “enhanced interrogation techniques” and “rendition, detention and interrogation programme” were used, the summary was essentially a torture report.
According to an International Committee of the Red Cross report, Guantanamo detainees were tortured by means of: suffocation by water; beatings by use of a collar; confinement in boxes; prolonged nudity; and more.
According to international rights groups, “systematic human rights violations, including the crimes under international law of torture and enforced disappearance were committed”.
In the Universal Periodical Review session on the US last month, civil society groups and a number of UN member stated called on the need to close the Guantanamo detention facility and to end indefinite detentions.
The groups stated that the US “has much to gain”, if it rejects impunity, returns to the rule of law, and provides “adequate redress to the dozens and dozens of people it so brutally abused”.