Senate panel approves measure banning CIA use of contractors for interrogations

[JURIST] The US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence [official website] voted Thursday to approve a ban prohibiting the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) [official website] from allowing private contractors to interrogate detainees. The ban is part of a bill authorizing intelligence expenditures for the 2009 fiscal year which would also require intelligence agencies to give the International Committee of the Red Cross [official website] access to all intelligence prisoners. The measure is intended to prevent the agencies from holding "ghost detainees" [JURIST news archive], prisoners who are held in secret without record or communication.

The bill also contains a provision, added earlier this week, that restricts CIA interrogators [JURIST report] to techniques included in the 2006 Army Field Manual on Human Intelligence Collector Operations [PDF text; press release]. That measure would effectively prevent the CIA from using waterboarding [JURIST news archive] during interrogations. If passed, the bill would also create an inspector general for each of the 16 US intelligence agencies. In March, President George W. Bush vetoed [JURIST report] the Intelligence Authorization Act of 2008 [HR 2082 materials], which included a similar provision limiting CIA interrogators to interrogation techniques explicitly authorized by the 2006 Army Field Manual, and an attempt to override the veto failed [JURIST report]. AP has more.

 

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