19.5.06

The BBC and UN human rights report...


The bbc has changed their main headline twice now in the past hour. The first version was this:

US 'must close Guantanamo camp'


The committee told the US to end secret detention

The US should close the Guantanamo Bay camp in Cuba and any secret "war on terror" detention facilities abroad, a United Nations report has said.
The UN Committee against Torture
said that detaining persons in such conditions was a violation of the UN Convention against Torture.
It also urged the US to put in place "immediate
measures" to eradicate torture of detainees by its troops.
The committee's
report follows a hearing in early May into US conduct.
"The state party
should cease to detain any person at Guantanamo Bay and close the detention
facility," the 11-page report said.
It also told the US to ensure no-one was
detained in any secret detention facility.
"The state party should
investigate and disclose the existence of any such facilities and the authority
under which they have been established and the manner in which detainees are
treated," the report said.
The report also urged the US to "rescind any
interrogation technique" that constituted torture, such as the use of dogs to
scare detainees.
It criticised vague guidelines that it said had led to
serious abuse of detainees and techniques which "have resulted in the deaths of
some detainees during interrogation".
The report was compiled by a panel of
10 experts who heard testimony in early May from a delegation of US officials
into its "war on terror" conduct.




THEN this story was put through their bleach cycle, and came out like this an hour later:


US 'must end secret detentions'

The committee told the US to end secret
detentionThe US should close any secret "war on terror" detention facilities
abroad and the Guantanamo Bay camp in Cuba, a United Nations report has said.
The UN Committee against Torture urged the US to ensure no one was detained
in any secret facility.
The report followed the first US appearance before
the committee since the 11 September 2001 attacks.
During the hearing in
early May, the US neither confirmed or denied the existence of secret prisons.
UN COMMITTEE AGAINST TORTURE
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in full (131K)

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The US has been holding hundreds of terror suspects arrested since
11 September at facilities in Iraq, Afghanistan and Cuba. There are also reports
of CIA-run secret facilities in other countries.
The committee told the US
to provide more information on secret detention facilities.
"The state party
should investigate and disclose the existence of any such facilities and the
authority under which they have been established and the manner in which
detainees are treated," the 11-page report said.
It also called on the US to
end detentions at the Guantanamo Bay camp and close it.
Detaining people in
such conditions was a violation of the UN Convention against Torture, it said.
Abuse of detainees
The committee also urged the US to act against
ill-treatment of detainees, calling for "immediate measures to eradicate all
forms of torture and ill-treatment of detainees by its military or civilian
personnel, in any territory under its jurisdiction".
It called for an end to
interrogation techniques it said constituted torture, such as the use of dogs to
scare detainees.
The recommendations are not binding but the BBC's Imogen
Foulkes says the committee's conclusions will not make comfortable reading for
the US, with the assertion that secret camps do constitute torture.
The US
has maintained that it is engaged in a long term war on terror and that some
aspects of the convention on torture may not apply.
But the UN committee
rejected this, our correspondent says, saying the total ban on torture applies
in time of peace, war or armed conflict and anyone violating the convention
should be prosecuted.
Human rights groups welcomed the report.
"We hope
that the United States will take heed of this report and really begin to rethink
and change its policies on a number of practices, including secret prisons, lack
of accountability for abuse, and transfer of prisoners to places where they may
be tortured," Jennifer Daskal of Human Rights Watch told Reuters news agency.

Both of these stories (were actually the SAME STORY and) were available at the following link:

US 'must close...something, we can't decide what'



The fact that these Human Rights abuses were a violation of international law was pushed to the bottom of the story in the second version, as though that was an irrelevant fact. I wonder why...


3 comments:

misneach said...

pardon the terrible format, but I was trying to get the text up on here before I lost the original version of the story that has since been deleted from the BBC in favor of the second, softer, version.

elendil said...

Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and a few other NGOs, have designated June Torture Awareness Month. I've created a blogroll you can join if you're interested. You can find it here. The idea is that everyone is linked to from the blogroll, and in exchange, you discuss torture (as you already do), and link to the Torture Awareness site to help support the NGOs.

There's a lot of bloggers concerned about human rights abuse in the War on Terror. If we coordinate, we can show our support and help Amnesty and HRW make Torture Awareness Month a success!

elendil said...

Thanks for joining up misneach. Getting the ball rolling is the hardest part. Once a few people like yourself have joined, we'll be set :-)