Friday, February 01, 2008

CCR Says Suspected Use of Torture Undermines Credibility of 9/11 Report

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - January 31 - The Center for Constitutional Rights is outraged by new information that reveals that the much of the information contained in the 9/11 Commissions Final Report regarding the planning and execution of the terror attacks on New York and Washington was supported by information gained from torture, including water boarding.

The analysis from NBC News shows that more than one quarter of all footnotes in the 9/11 Commission’s Report refers to controversial interrogation techniques, including information in the Report’s most critical chapters, those on planning and executing the attacks. Remarkably, Commission staffers and Executive Director Philip Zelikow admitted that though they were skeptical of the intelligence reports, they did not make any inquiries regarding cross-examination techniques.

CCR President Michael Ratner expressed shock at the revelations stating, “If the Commission suspected there was torture, they should have realized that as a matter of law, evidence derived from torture is not reliable, in part because of the possibility of false confession…at the very least, they should have added caveats to all those references.”

“The Commission’s heavy reliance on tainted sources reinforces the notion that we as a nation have not yet come to terms with the reality that the U.S. engaged in torture,” he added. “Until we do so, we undermine our credibility in the eyes of the world as a nation of hypocrites.”

CCR is currently seeking to preserve evidence of the torture of their client Majid Khan, a former CIA ghost detainee now held at Guantanamo. While held at a CIA black site, Majid was subject to hours of torture, which only stopped when he agreed to sign a statement that he wasn’t allowed to read.

“The effect of our government’s reliance on secrecy and torture not only shames the U.S. in the eyes of the world, but sacrifices our freedom and security here at home,” said Vincent Warren, the Executive Director of CCR.


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