ICRC REPORT ON THE TREATMENT OF FOURTEEN "HIGH VALUE DETAINEES" IN CIA CUSTODY
5. FATE OF OTHER PERSONS WHO PASSED THROUGH THE CIA DETENTION PROGRAM
During his speech of 6 September 2006, President Bush also stated that the CIA detention program held a limited number of persons at a given time, and that a number of other persons had also been detained by the CIA in the context of the fight against terrorism. President Bush added that: “many of them have been returned to their home countries for prosecution or detention by their governments” once the US authorities had determined that they had “little or no intelligence value”.
In subsequent discussions with various US Government departments, it was again stated to the ICRC that the majority, if not all, other detainees who went through this program have been transferred to their countries of origin.
It is the ICRC’s understanding that these transfers are all subject to formal agreements between the USG and the respective countries which include, inter alia, assurances of humane treatment on the part of the countries of origin. The ICRC has a number of legal and operational concerns about this practice. In particular, the ICRC regrets that the USG has not informed the ICRC of the countries of destination so that the ICRC can seek access from the relevant authorities in order to monitor human treatment and to ensure communication with their families.
In light of the conditions of detention and treatment of the fourteen during the period they were held in the CIA detention program, as reported above, the ICRC remains gravely concerned by the fact that a significant number of other persons have passed through this detention program and may have been subjected to similar, if not the same, conditions and treatment. The ICRC has not received any clarification of the fate of these persons, and has therefore not been able to seek access to them following their reported transfer to their home countries. Consequently, it has not been able to assess the detention regime experienced by these persons whilst in CIA custody, nor to assess whether they are currently assured humane treatment by the detaining authorities in their respective countries of origin, nor whether they have been given the possibility of re-establishing contact with their families.
The ICRC welcomes the fact that it has been able to begin discussions with the CIA on this question. It considers the issue to be a humanitarian priority and anticipates a continuation of the discussions aimed at resolving this question.
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