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Thursday, Sep 18th

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New light shed on US government's extraordinary rendition program

RenditionA groundbreaking research project has mapped the US government's global kidnap and secret detention programme, shedding unprecedented light on one of the most controversial secret operations of recent years.

The interactive online project – by two British universities and a legal charity – has uncovered new details of the way in which the so-called extraordinary rendition programme operated for years in the wake of the September 11 attacks, and the techniques used by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to avoid detection in the face of growing public concern.

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Guantánamo hunger strikers subject to harsh new method of force feeding

Guantanamo force feeding detaineesHunger-strikers being force fed at Guantánamo Bay are shackled to a chair, fitted with a mask and have tubes inserted through their nose and into their stomachs for up to two hours at a time, according to revised guidelines in use at the camp.

The guidelines, which were updated after the latest protest by inmates began in February, detail the process of involuntary feeding and how after the sessions, detainees are kept in a "dry cell" to prevent them vomiting. News of the 30-page Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) manual – which was first published on Monday, by al-Jazeera, and has since been confirmed to be genuine by the US military – comes amid fresh questions over the ethics of force-feeding protesters at the prison.

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Lawyer in long fight for former Abu Ghraib detainees

Abu GhraibA Detroit-area lawyer has been fighting for almost a decade to win compensation for four men who spent time in Iraq's notorious Abu Ghraib prison.

CACI Premier Technology, a Virginia company that handled interrogations at Abu Ghraib, has asked a federal judge to dismiss Shereef Akeel's lawsuit, the Detroit Free Press reported Thursday. A hearing is scheduled Friday in Arlington, Va.

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Israeli Abuse Of Palestinian Children In Prison 'Systematic,' Says UN Report

Children abused in Israeli prisonsThe ill-treatment of Palestinian minors held within the Israeli military detention system is "widespread, systematic and institutionalised," a report Wednesday by the UN children's fund found.

UNICEF in the 22-page report that examined the Israeli military court system for holding Palestinian children found evidence of practices it said were "cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment."

"Ill-treatment of Palestinian children in the Israeli military detention system appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalised," it concluded, outlining 38 recommendations to improve the protection of children in custody.

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Former Guantánamo chief prosecutor petitions Obama to close prison camp

Guantanamo prison A former chief prosecutor for the controversial American prison camp at Guantánamo Bay has called for the prison to be closed, launching an online petition that has gathered some 60,000 signatures in less than 24 hours.

Col Morris Davis served for two years as the chief prosecutor for terrorism trials at Guantánamo. He decided to campaign for the closure of the camp in the wake of a hunger strike that now involves more than 100 prisoners, including some 21 who are being force fed to keep them from starving to death.

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Former State Department Official: Team Bush Knew Many at Gitmo Were Innocent

Bush knew Gitmos prisoners innocentRetired Colonel Lawrence B. Wilkerson, who served the Bush Administration as a senior official in the State Department with access to classified documents and the most senior White House officials, was willing to testify, and formally declared under penalty of perjury, that many of the prisoners detained at Guantanamo Bay were taken into custody "without regard for whether they were truly enemy combatants, or in fact whether many of them were enemies at all."

His declaration, filed in the spring of 2010 in a D.C. federal court, asserted that "of the initial 742 detainees that had arrived at Guantánamo, the majority of them had never seen a U.S. soldier in the process of their initial detention and their captivity had not been subjected to any meaningful review."

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Life under lockdown at America’s hunger-striking prison camps

Gitmo With nearly every one of the 166 Guantánamo prisoners now under lockdown — back in solitary existence after years of communal living — the military has reverted to a battle rhythm reminiscent of the Bush administration.

Pre-cleared captives awaiting political change are confined for long stretches to 8-by-12 cells, each man praying behind his own steel door, deciding for himself whether to eat a solitary meal.

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