World Bulletin/News Desk
The U.S. State Department is increasing security at some American embassies in anticipation of the public release of a long-awaited Senate report detailing the CIA's use of harsh interrogation techniques, U.S. officials said on Tuesday.
The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the additional security measures reflected concerns that the report could prompt protests in countries where the CIA operated secret prisons that were used to conduct interrogations.
Human rights activists and some U.S. politicians have labeled as "torture" some of the physically stressful interrogation techniques, such as simulated drowning, that were authorized under then-President George W. Bush.
For security reasons, State Department officials declined to specify how or where U.S. embassies were being fortified in anticipation of the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee report.
One official said the Obama administration was concerned that the report's publication could ignite a "tinder box" in Middle Eastern countries and also frighten some foreign security agencies into scaling back cooperation with their U.S. counterparts.
According to unclassified documents and extensive news reports, sites where the spy agency secretly imprisoned detainees as part of its now-defunct "Rendition/Detention/Interrogation" program included Poland, Romania, Thailand, and Afghanistan, and the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
While countries involved in the program were exposed in news stories several years ago, the report's publication could rekindle anger, particularly in the Muslim world, at U.S. practices that were pursued during Bush's "war on terror."
Most, if not all, references in the report to the former locations of secret CIA prisons were redacted by the Obama administration in the process of preparing a declassified version of the report for public release, officials said.
McClatchy Newspapers reported on Monday that the original, uncensored version of the report used pseudonyms when referring to countries where the agency operated secret prisons and that the White House and Central Intelligence Agency redacted these pseudonyms, rather than actual country names.
An official familiar with both versions of the report said that publishing even the pseudonyms would provide readers with too many clues as to where CIA interrogations took place.
It is unclear when the Senate committee will release a declassified version of the document. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who chairs the panel, and other members of the committee's Democratic majority have complained that the Administration's redactions are excessive.
Release of the roughly 600-page document, a summary of a much longer committee narrative that will remain secret indefinitely, is unlikely this week, officials said.
On Friday, the office of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said 85 percent of the report had been declassified by the Administration, and half of the redactions were to the report's footnotes. Feinstein and other Democrats are pressing for some of the redacted information to be restored.
An official said Republicans on the intelligence committee, who largely boycotted the five-year investigation that produced the report and have drafted their own critique of it, are comfortable with the current redactions.
After a campaign by teacher and student unions, the University of Helsinki has cancelled the G4S contract, followed by North Carolina also dropping their contract that provided security services in civic buildings which has now been replaced by a local company.
UN members have failed to agree on an atomic weapons ban for the Middle East.
China and Peru signed deals on Friday to cooperate on industrial production and transportation in an effort diversify a bilateral economic exchange that had been focused on natural resources.
US Senate has said that there will be no vote related to agencies telephone data collection until May 31.
A gunfight in western Mexico has killed 39 people in Mexico.
More than a quarter of French Africans feel discriminated against in their workplace in France.
The UN has said that it will investigate the firing of shots on its compound in South Sudan.
The Dutch government has agreed to introduce a partial ban on wearing the full face veil known as the niqab in public schools, hospitals, public transport and government offices. There are approximately between 200-500 women who wear the niqab in the country.
Protestors in Bosnia have demonstrated against the Morsi death penalty.
Germany and France have urged Greece to return to negotiations to complete a reform agreement before cash runs out.
The EU and the Ukraine have put in place a anti-corruption investigative team to handle misuse of EU funds for Kiev
The UN has expressed its shock over a Hungarian survey that has linked migrants and terrorism.
Malawi has expressed high hopes for entrepreneurs to help drive their economy.
The EU is set to propose to relocate 40,000 refugees across the entire EU
Cholera has struck more than 3,000 Burundi refugees in Tanzana, an epidemic that is now worsening daily.