TODAY.AZ / Politics

Terry Davis: "I am satisfied with Azerbaijan's second reply on secret CIA prisons"

08 September 2006 [13:50] - TODAY.AZ
The Council of Europe Secretary General Terry Davis yesterday held a press conference on U.S President George Bush's statement on secret CIA prisons.

The Secretary General said the U.S President's statement proves that the United States has secret prisons in some countries, APA reports.

"Though George Bush did not say anything about the existence of the secret prisons in Europe. But his confirming that prisoners were rendered to the Guantanamo prison coincides with the evidences stated in the report drawn up by Senator Dik Marty. Another problem concerning us is that the United States is secretly detaining and interrogating prisoners in fight against terrorism. Great Britain and Denmark have also carried out anti-terrorism operations recently. However, they did not do it secretly. I have already set an inquiry regarding this matter, and it has not been closed yet. I think the Council of Europe member states should ensure human rights as needed, which is one of their obligations. Thus, if these prisoners are tortured in any European country, they have right to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights," the Secretary General underlined.

Terry Davis today also made public his proposals on how European governments should reinforce the protection of human rights in Europe and close the gaps identified by his investigation of the so-called rendition flights.

The proposed measures include drawing up minimum standards to prevent human rights abuses by security services, in particular allied foreign security services active on the territory of a Council of Europe member state, mechanisms to enforce existing human rights obligations with respect to transiting aircraft, and a legal instrument permitting diplomatic immunity to be waived in cases of serious human rights violations.

The proposals were sent to the governments of the 46 Council of Europe member states on 4 July, but were kept confidential until the first exchange of views with the Committee of Ministers yesterday.

"Yesterday statement by President Bush acknowledging the existence of secret CIA prisons adds urgency to the need to prevent any such human rights violation in the future. Secret prisons are not only wrong, they are also counterproductive. The fight against terrorists can only be effective if it is as fair as it is robust," said Terry Davis.

To question whether he is satisfied with Azerbaijan's reply to the second inquiry on secret prisons, Mr.Davis said this reply satisfied him.

"I did not put any pressure on the Azerbaijani government for replying my second inquiry. A number of countries had to reply the inquiry for the second time," he said.


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