CIA Secret Overseas Prisons to Close, Contractors' Role Ended
The C.I.A. today announced the closure of overseas CIA prisons for detainees. Private contractors will no longer be involved in interrogating prisoners.
The C.I.A. has never revealed the location of its overseas facilities, but intelligence officials, aviation records and news reports have placed them in Afghanistan, Thailand, Poland, Romania and Jordan, among other countries.
More from CIA Chief Leon Pannetta's statement: [More...]
In the statement, Mr. Panetta vowed to continue the "global pursuit" of Al Qaeda and its allies. But he said that interrogators will use traditional methods and not physical force, and that the interrogators will be government employees.
"C.I.A. officers, whose knowledge of terrorist organizations is second to none, will continue to conduct debriefings using a dialog style of questioning that is fully consistent with the interrogation approaches authorized and listed in the Army Field Manual," Mr. Panetta wrote.
"C.I.A. officers do not tolerate, and will continue to promptly report, any inappropriate behavior or allegations of abuse. That holds true whether a suspect is in the custody of an American partner or a foreign liaison service," he wrote, ruling out asking other countries' interrogators to question suspects on behalf of the agency using the banned methods.
While Pannetta said they will cooperate with congressional investigations into past interrogations, the Administration will oppose punishment for CIA officials who engaged in abusive techniques:
He restated his opposition to investigation or prosecution of C.I.A. officers for their involvement in the program.
"Officers who act on guidance from the Department of Justice -- or acted on such guidance previously -- should not be investigated, let alone punished," Mr. Panetta wrote. "This is what fairness and wisdom require."
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