EU: Council of Europe's Anti-Torture Committee denounces secret detention

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"Strasbourg, 14.09.2007 - In its 17th General Report published today, the CPT denounces secret detention, an illegal practice that has been resorted to in particular in the context of the fight against terrorism. Secret detention amounts in itself to ill-treatment and – due to the removal of fundamental safeguards which it entails - inevitably heightens the risk of resort to other forms of ill-treatment. Responding to reports that certain secret detention facilities were located in European countries, the CPT invites anyone who is in possession of information concerning such facilities to bring it to the attention of the Committee.

The CPT also comments on the related issue of extra-judicial transfers from one country to another, so-called "renditions". The Committee is particularly concerned by the practice of rendition for the purposes of detention and interrogation outside the normal criminal justice system. "Operations of this kind inevitably involve a risk of ill-treatment for the person concerned that no 'assurances' can ever fully remove; it follows that the authorities of Parties (to the European Convention for the Prevention of Torture) should never offer assistance in the context of such operations". (CoE, press release)

Full-text of General Report (pdf)

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