The EU Parliament has adopted by a massive 389 votes in favour, 137 against with 55 abstentions the interim report on alleged illegal CIA activity in Europe.
The CIA, noted the European Parliament in its report, (The preliminary conclusions, were drafted by Italian Socialist MEP Claudio Fava) has been "directly responsible" in cases of extraordinary rendition, "illegal seizure, removal, abduction and detention of terrorist suspects on the territory of Member States, accession and candidate countries" - all of which constitute violations of fundamental rights under international law. As MEPs determined, the CIA - using aircraft hired by front companies - has made use of such practices for the illegal transfer of terrorist suspects to countries which frequently use torture during interrogations. With that in mind, MEPs have demanded extraordinary renditions to be "clearly prohibited" in international law.
Member States "may be held liable" for failure to comply with the European Convention of Human Rights, they added. Under the case law of the European Court of Human Rights, EU countries have the positive obligation to prevent human rights violations on their territory -- and to carry out investigations "to ascertain whether their territory and their airspace" have been used in connection with human rights violations.
European governments attacked
MEP's say "it is implausible that certain European governments were not aware of the
activities linked to extraordinary rendition taking place on their territory". Such
involvement or complicity, they argue, was likely ;
1. On the part of Italian authorities in the 2003 abduction of Egyptian cleric Abu Omar by CIA agents in Milan
2. On the part of Bosnian authorities in the abduction and transfer of six Bosnian nationals or residents of Algerian origin to Guantanamo Bay
3. On the part of Swedish authorities, who expelled Egyptian nationals Mohammed Al Zary and Ahmed Agiza, handing them over to CIA agents for transfer to Egypt.
They also condemn the 2003 abduction of German national Khaled El-Masri by the CIA and "deplore the reluctance of [the FYROM authorities] to confirm that El-Masri was in Skopje and was probably being held there before his rendition to Afghanistan by CIA agents."
Parliament also has noted that EU-Coordinator for Counter-Terrorism Gijs the Vries and CFSP High Representative Javier Solana both told MEPs that they were not aware of any violation of national, European or international law by Member States cooperating with the CIA, adding that they were not competent to request relevant information from Member States.
Citing "repeated violations" of the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation during flights carried out by the CIA in Europe - and underlining that no European country has made consistent efforts to ensure that civilian aircraft are used for purposes compatible with international human rights - the Parliament calls on the Commission to harmonise national laws on the use of national airspace and airports. Current European legislation, MEPs conclude, is "totally inadequate".
The report (as ever) asks for more time - so the Temporary Committee on the alleged use of European countries by the CIA for the transport and illegal detention of prisoners (TDIP) will continue its work for the remainder of its 12 month term. The Committee's final report, should appear by Jan / Feb 2007.
MEPs plan, among other things, to invite the Secretary-General of NATO to a hearing to clarify the possible involvement of SFOR and KFOR forces in the illegal detention of the six Bosnians who still remain in Guantanamo. MEPs again call for the closure of the prison at Guantanamo, asking Member States to "take a proactive role" in finding a solution for the detainees.
Curiously when Googling this news item you will find nothing in the MSM anywhere in Europe.
POSTSCRIPT 9th July 2006
The excellent Jacksonville sage Nur al Cubicle as ever has the low down on SISMI and the Italian Job - Niger Uranium, now you sees it now you don't, co-ordinating CIA kidnappings - trying to blackmail Prodi with connections ot CIA renditions etc., etc., required reading.