CIA Closing Secret Overseas Prisons
Posted Apr 10, 2009 6:18 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss
CIA director Leon Panetta says the agency no longer operates any secret overseas prisons and won't use private contractors to conduct interrogations.
Panetta told of the closings in a letter to CIA workers, according to the New York Times and the Washington Post. The prisons are thought to be located in Afghanistan, Thailand, Poland, Romania and Jordan, among other countries.
Panetta said the CIA still has the authority to hold individuals “on a short-term transitory basis,” but the agency anticipates turning them over to U.S. military authorities or their country of jurisdiction, depending on the situation.
Human rights groups have criticized harsh interrogations of al-Qaida suspects at the secret prisons. The critics contend waterboarding and other techniques amounted to illegal torture.