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Bush administration should be investigated for torture of prisoners, says human rights group

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 15 June 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c3182
  1. Janice Hopkins Tanne
  1. 1New York

    A human rights group has called on Barack Obama to start immediate criminal investigation of alleged experimentation and research on terrorist suspects detained after the attacks in the United States on 11 September 2001.

    Physicians for Human Rights, a US organisation of health professionals, alleges that doctors and other health professionals working for the Central Intelligence Agency monitored and refined “enhanced” interrogation techniques to make sure they stayed within the boundaries drawn up by the Bush administration.

    It charges that the administration “apparently conducted illegal and unethical human experimentation and research on detainees in CIA custody.”

    Seven other organisations signed the complaint, including Amnesty International USA, the Center for Constitutional Rights, and the Center for Victims of Torture.

    The change in status from detainees to research subjects means that the doctors’ role “could violate accepted standards of medical ethics, as well as domestic and international law,” says the group’s report. “These practices …

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