In a report released by the Open Society Justice Initiative (OSJI), 54 countries, including Sweden, Iceland, Syria, and the UK, are documented as having assisted the CIA in kidnapping, torturing, and detaining suspects after 9/11.
The OSJI conducted extensive research into the rendition programme put into place by the United States government through covert operations by the CIA. Countries that the US government publically denounced as ‘enemies’, such as Iran and Syria, were also asked for, and provided, help to the CIA.
In some countries, including countries in Europe, the CIA established secret prisons (known as ‘Black Sites’) where suspects were routinely tortured. Lithuania and Romania known to have been hosts to secret CIA prisons, and Poland has been involved in political controversy recently because of its involvement in hosting a secret CIA prison in the small town of Stare Kiejkty.
The 216 page report revealed countries that had not previously been included in the rendition controversy.
“By engaging in torture and other abuses associated with secret detention and extraordinary rendition, the US government violated domestic and international law, thereby diminishing its moral standing and eroding support for its counterterrorism efforts worldwide as these abuses came to light,” lead author Amrit Singh wrote. But she added: “The moral cost of these programs was borne not just by the US but by the 54 other countries it recruited to help.”
The report also lists 136 people who were held or transported by the CIA during their covert rendition operations.
The authors state the aim of the report is to start the process of a criminal investigation into human rights abuses, to stop the rendition programme, and to force the US to close its remaining prisons around the world.