US violated law at Guantanamo: UN report
A UN investigation has concluded that the US committed acts amounting to torture at Guantanamo Bay.Updated: Feb 14, 2006 10:06 IST
A UN investigation has concluded that the United States committed acts amounting to torture at Guantanamo Bay, according to a draft report obtained today.
The torture included force-feeding detainees and subjecting them to prolonged solitary confinement.
The report from five UN human rights experts accused the United States of violating the detainees' rights to a fair trial, to freedom of religion and to health.
It recommended that the US close Guantanamo Bay and revoke all special interrogation techniques authorised by the US Department of Defence.
"The apparent attempts by the US Administration to reinterpret certain interrogation techniques as not reaching the threshold of torture in the framework of the struggle against terrorism are of utmost concern," the report said.
US officials rejected the report, saying it was riddled with errors and treated statements from detainees' lawyers as fact.
Its most significant flaw, that officials said, was that it judged US treatment of detainees according to peacetime human rights laws.
The United States contends that it is in a state of conflict and should be judged according to the laws of war.
"Once you fail to even acknowledge that as the legal basis for what we're doing, much of the legal analysis that follows just doesn't hold," a US State Department official said.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the United States has not formulated an official, public response to the draft.
The draft report was delivered to the United States on January 16. It was first disclosed late Sunday by the Los Angeles Times.
First Published: Feb 14, 2006 10:06 IST