KIEV, Ukraine — Russia's foreign ministry has described the recently Senate report on the CIA's torture program and "shocking" and is demanding the U.S. conduct a full public inquiry into human rights abuses during the war on terror.
"The evidence that has been uncovered is the latest confirmation of gross systemic human rights violations by the U.S. government," Konstantin Dolgov, the ministry's human rights ombudsman, said in a statement published on its website Thursday. Rights organizations should push for full disclosure of the extent of the CIA's "extraordinary rendition" program, Dolgov said, likening it to torture during the Spanish Inquisition, and for its organizers to be brought to justice.
"This state of affairs doesn't add up with the U.S.'s pretensions to the title of 'touchstone of democracy,'" Dolgov added. "This is far from reality."
Revelations about the CIA program, which lasted from 2002 to 2007 and saw suspected Al-Qaeda militants subjected to harrowing torture including waterboarding, sleep deprivation, and "rectal feeding," have been condemned by several authoritarian states long angry about Western criticism of their rights record, including China and North Korea. Russia has been particularly keen to point out apparent U.S. hypocrisy as it seeks to deflect flak for its involvement in the Ukraine crisis, devoting hours of prime-time state TV coverage to clashes between protesters and police in Ferguson, Missouri.
Max Seddon is a correspondent for BuzzFeed World based in Berlin. He has reported from Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and across the ex-Soviet Union and Europe. His secure PGP fingerprint is 6642 80FB 4059 E3F7 BEBE 94A5 242A E424 92E0 7B71
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