Monday, October 13, 2008
Wild and unverifiable charges Denied
In late 2006, the Bush administration backed a full-scale Ethiopian military offensive that ousted the Islamist authorities from Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu. The fighting caused thousands of Somalis, including some who were suspected of terrorist links, to flee across the Kenya border.
An unknown number of them — likely dozens — were questioned by the Central Intelligence Agency and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents in Addis Ababa. From February to May 2007, Ethiopian security officers daily transported detainees — including several pregnant women — to a villa where U.S. officials interrogated them about suspected terrorist links. At night the Ethiopian officers returned the detainees to their cells.
For the most part, detainees were sent home soon after their interrogation by U.S. agents ended. Of those known to have been interrogated by U.S. officials, just eight Kenyans remain. (A ninth Kenyan in Addis Ababa was rendered to Ethiopia in August 2007, after U.S. interrogations reportedly stopped.) read
"Wild and unverifiable charges that the Government deported Kenyans to Ethiopia are baseless. The Government has been very clear that it repatriated combatants to Somalia after they, the combatants, said they were not Kenyan. After a comprehensive audit, eight of the combatants and suspected terrorists were found to be Kenyan and brought back home. Claims of 19 Kenyans being held in Ethiopia are mere speculation and activism statements." read
Tuesday, October 07, 2008
No knowledge nor can I comment on renditions
In April 2007, Ethiopia acknowledged it was holding 41 "suspected terrorists" from 17 countries. In October 2008, the US Government still refused to respond to questions on its role. Most detainees were released after a few months. The Ethiopian Government acknowledges that up to 10 foreign detainees are still in detention.
"I’m not sure if they have appeared before a court," Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Tekede Alemu. The minister rejected claims the detainees have been mistreated.
He also denied US agents had been allowed to control the interrogations of foreign prisoners.
"I have no knowledge of it nor as official policy can I comment on such matters," US Assistant Secretary of State for Africa, Jendayi Frazer. Jendayi E. Frazer was sworn in as Assistant Secretary for African Affairs on August 29, 2005. Prior to her current assignment, Dr. Frazer served as U.S. Ambassador to South Africa. Immediately before her ambassadorship, Dr. Frazer served as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director of African Affairs at the National Security Council.
Prior to joining the George W. Bush Administration, Dr. Frazer taught public policy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Dr. Frazer brought practical experience to that position, having worked as a political-military planner with the Joint Chiefs of Staff and as Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council, during her time as a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellow.
Dr. Frazer earned her B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees at Stanford University. Her doctoral dissertation examined Kenya's civilian-military relationship.
Thursday, October 02, 2008
A Most Wanted Man
A first-class novel about the most pressing moral and political concerns of our time, not least the scandal of extraordinary rendition. John le Carré is at his shrewd and cynical best in a novel tackling the key moral issues of the day, writes Charles Cumming. Telegraph
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