Daily archives: April 12, 2006

Stop in the name of the law

From The International Herald Tribune

Maher Arar, a wireless technology consultant and a Canadian citizen of Syrian origin, goes on holiday with his family to Tunisia. On his way home to Canada he transits via New York’s JFK airport. There, he is detained by U.S. officials and interrogated about alleged links to Al Qaeda. Twelve days later, he finds himself chained, shackled and flown aboard a private plane to Jordan and from there transferred to a Syrian prison.

In Syria, he is held in a tiny grave-like cell for 10 months and 10 days before he is moved to a better cell in a different prison. He is beaten, tortured and forced to make a false confession.

This is “extraordinary rendition” – the unlawful transfer of people from one country to another. It is part of the Bush administration’s “war on terror,” with other governments turning a blind eye.

Planes associated with rendition flights have landed and taken off from dozens of destinations around the world, including Britain, Germany, Jordan, Afghanistan and Albania. Flight logs and airport records show that nearly 1,000 flights directly linked to the CIA have used European airspace.


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