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Britain to disclose no-torture interrogation techniques

LONDON — The British government will publicly disclose for the first time the guidelines its intelligence officers use when interrogating suspects, Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Wednesday.

Brown, in a written statement to the House of Commons, said the step was being taken to "protect the reputation of our security and intelligence services" and to demonstrate that Britain does not torture suspects.

"Torture has no place in a modern democratic society. We will not condone it. Nor will we ever ask others to do it on our behalf," he said.

Brown also announced that Peter Gibson, a former senior judge and intelligence services commissioner, would monitor whether the guidelines were being followed and report annually to the prime minister.

British resident Binyam Mohamed, who spent seven years in U.S. custody as a terrorism suspect but was released without charges last month, recently accused British intelligence officials of colluding in his torture.

Mohamed, who was held in Pakistan, Morocco, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, alleged in a newspaper interview that the British domestic intelligence agency, known as MI5, passed questions and information to Pakistani officials, who he said tortured him at the behest of United States.

Opposition politicians and human rights groups have called for investigations into Mohamed's claims, which U.S. and British officials have denied.

Terror suspect denied bail: An alleged al-Qaida operative held for nearly six years before being charged as a terrorist must remain behind bars in Charleston, S.C., as the criminal case against him continues, a judge ruled Wednesday. U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Carr turned down Ali al-Marri's bid to be released on bail, despite the defense's offer of collateral worth more than $1 million and its proposal to keep him guarded in a safe house.

Detainees may come to U.S.: Attorney General Eric Holder said Wednesday that some Chinese Muslim detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, are being considered for release in the United States. The United States has cleared 17 of the Uighurs for release from Guantanamo but insists it will not hand them over to China because the Uighurs fear they will be tortured.

Britain to disclose no-torture interrogation techniques 03/18/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 18, 2009 10:36pm]
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