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Obama orders closure of CIA prisons

world Updated: Jan 23, 2009 00:50 IST

President Barack Obama Thursday ordered the closure of all CIA detention centers set up abroad to hold terror suspects, a senior administration official said.

An executive order "states that the CIA shall close as expeditiously as possible any detention facility that it currently operates and shall not operate any such detention facility in the future," a senior administration official told reporters.

In a swift reaction, the Central Intelligence Agency said it would abide by the presidential order on the closure of secret prisons and changing policy on interrogations "without exception, carve-out, or loophole."

In a message to staff, CIA director Michael Hayden said the agency had made adjustments before as the legal and policy landscape for conducting the "war on terror" has changed.

"This executive order is no different," he said. "We will review the order carefully and issue appropriate guidance to ensure that we continue to act in consonance with the law and with policy direction."

"When our government changes its law or policy, we will follow that direction without exception, carve-out, or loophole."