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Council of Europe releases reports on CIA flights and secret detention centres

On 1 March, the Council of Europe (CoE) Secretary General, Terry Davis issued his interim report on allegations of CIA-run secret prisons and flights in Europe.  The report criticized the inadequacy of effective oversight of the activities of foreign agencies on the territories of CoE Member States. On 17 March, the Venice Commission of the CoE presented its legal opinion, stating that allowing secret detentions, transit of prisoners and overflights, where there is a risk of torture, would breach the European Convention on Human Rights. The Commission also held that collective self-defense and international civil aviation treaties must be interpreted and applied in a manner consistent with states’ obligations under human rights law.

Davis Report State Responses Venice Commission Opinion Thomas Hammarberg Statement