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Friday, Dec 02nd

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German human rights group files suit against CIA 'Queen of Torture'

CIA torturerA German human rights group has filed a criminal complaint against Alfreda Frances Bikowsky, a CIA official who allegedly authorized torture of suspected al Qaeda militants. The complaint, submitted in federal court on Mondaynon, presents proof of Bikowsky’s involvement in the torture of German citizen Khaled El Masri and asks that she be prosecuted in Germany.

It also puts Bikowsky, nicknamed the “Queen of Torture,” in the spotlight of European efforts to hold CIA officials accountable for allegations of abuse.

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ACLU sues psychologists over CIA interrogation tactics

ACLU sues psychologists over tortureThe American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit Tuesday against two CIA contractors who designed and implemented the agency's harsh interrogation program, which has widely been denounced as torture.

According to the ACLU, James Mitchell and John “Bruce” Jessen — psychologists who had previously worked for the military — designed and participated in the CIA's interrogation methods, which the U.S. government has since renounced. The agency paid their company, Mitchell Jessen & Associates, $81 million, according to an unvarnished Senate report on the interrogation program, a summary of which was released last December.

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Where thousands of women vanish every year without a trace

Where women vanish Thousands of women and girls disappear in Mexico every year - many are never seen alive again. When one couple realised their daughter was missing, they knew they didn't have long to find her.

Elizabeth realised something was terribly wrong within 15 minutes of her teenage daughter, Karen, disappearing.

"I just knew it, I had an anguish that I'd never felt before. I searched the streets, called friends and family, but no-one had seen her," she says.

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Israel resumes ethnic cleansing of the Negev

Israel resumes ethnic cleansing of NegevIn Israel's Negev desert, ethnic cleansing is once again rearing its ugly head.

The unrecognised Bedouin village of Umm Al Hiran faces demolition and replacement with a Jewish town, Hiran. Seven hundred villagers face displacement, and only because they are of the wrong ethnicity.

Umm Al Hiran is one of tens of unrecognised villages in the Negev, inhabited by descendants of the Abu al-Qian tribe. Located in the area of Wadi Attir, the village is divided into two areas: Umm Al Hiran and Attir.

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More than 20 dead refugees discovered in truck in Austria

dead refugees found in Austrian truckAs many as 50 refugees were found dead in a parked truck in eastern Austria on Thursday, police said, marking what one Austrian official called a “dark day” in Europe’s escalating refugee crisis.

The vehicle, which contained between 20 and 50 bodies, was found on a parking strip off the highway in Burgenland state, police spokesman Hans Peter Doskozil said at a press conference with Interior Minister Johanna Mikl-Leitner. "This tragedy affects us all deeply," Mikl-Leitner said.

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IS affiliate in Egypt releases image of slain Croat captive

Croatian captive beheadedIslamic State sympathizers circulated an image Wednesday that appears to show the grisly aftermath of the beheading of a Croatian hostage abducted in Egypt, which if confirmed would mark the first such killing of a foreign captive in the country since the extremist group established a branch here last year.

The killing of the 30-year-old oil and gas sector surveyor likely will rattle companies with expatriate workers in Egypt and cast a cloud over President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi's attempts to boost international investment and tourism following years of unrest.

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Psychologists vote not to participate in US torture

APA votes against tortureThe American Psychological Association (APA) voted overwhelmingly on Friday to prohibit members from participating in interrogations conducted by United States intelligence agencies at locations deemed illegal under international law.

The decision follows a scathing independent report that found APA members were complicit in torturing detainees at the U.S. detention camp at Guantanamo Bay and secret CIA “black sites.”

Released in July, the report detailed specific instances in which psychologists directed and advised U.S. interrogators on how to instill fear and distress in detainees. APA voted at an association meeting in Toronto on Friday that participating in such activities violates the profession’s ethical code.

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