EU leaders should 'ban' renditions: New letter to EU leaders at start of summit

Amnesty International has today called on EU leaders to take action to effectively “ban” rendition flights and secret detentions in a new letter at the start of the EU summit beginning today (21-22 June).

Amnesty International’s letter to the 27 EU leaders comes after recent revelations of the existence of secret prisons in Romania and Poland in a Council of Europe report. Meanwhile, Amnesty International and five other organisations have also published a report naming 39 prisoners who remain missing and are believed to have been subjected to enforced “disappearance” by the US authorities in the “war on terror”.

Amnesty International is concerned that EU countries are ignoring the issue of rendition flights and secret detentions despite evidence of the involvement of EU states and the possibility that CIA prisoners may have been detained and tortured on EU soil.

Amnesty International EU Office Director Dick Oosting said:

“The grave nature of the accusations alone should be serious enough to engage EU political responsibility. Yet we are still waiting for one EU leader to stand up and say it is the EU’s business to stop and prevent kidnapping, torture and disappearances in Europe.

“The debate on whether or not there is enough proof can go on indefinitely but it will not make this issue go away. The EU ought to look at Canada and the Maher Arar case and learn from a country that at least acknowledged the problem and took political responsibility.”

In respect of renditions and secret detentions, Amnesty International is calling on the EU and its member states to:

  • Acknowledge its responsibilities
  • Stop ongoing violations
  • Ensure reparations to victims
  • Bring to justice those responsible for human rights violations
  • Prevent further serious breaches of human rights in the future

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