Uzbekistan, Torture, and Rendition
The New York Times reports that there is "growing evidence that the United States has sent terror suspects to Uzbekistan for detention and interrogation" as part of the government's rendition program (background here). It appears that the United States transported dozens of prisoners to Uzbekistan.
While the Bush administration claims it has no reason to believe that foreign governments participating in the rendition program mistreat prisoners, that claim cannot credibly be made with regard to Uzbekistan. According to a State Department human rights report issued in 2001:
The police repeatedly tortured prisoners, State Department officials wrote, noting that the most common techniques were "beating, often with blunt weapons, and asphyxiation with a gas mask." Separately, international human rights groups had reported that torture in Uzbek jails included boiling of body parts, using electroshock on genitals and plucking off fingernails and toenails with pliers. Two prisoners were boiled to death, the groups reported. The February 2001 State Department report stated bluntly: "Uzbekistan is an authoritarian state with limited civil rights."
The decision to make Uzbekistan "a partner in the global fight against terrorism" reveals the administration's utter lack of concern for human rights.
Update (TL): Recent allegations have been made about wide scale forced sterilization in Uzbekistan, something rarely, if ever, reported in our national press.
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