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December 01, 2016

CIA Detention and Interrogation Report

The White House informed Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Vice Chairman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) this month that the Obama administration will not declassify a report that covers Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) activities following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The 6,700-page report, Study of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Programs, was prepared by the committee’s staff between 2009 and 2012 and focuses on the use of CIA enhanced interrogation techniques. In a Dec. 9 letter to Feinstein, W. Neil Eggleston, counsel to the president, said the full study will be preserved under the Presidential Records Act and restricted for the full 12 years allowed under the act. Feinstein, who chaired the committee when the report was prepared, released a redacted version of the Conclusions and Executive Summary of the report in 2014 and urged that the entire report be made public. In response to the White House decision, Feinstein emphasized that there “must be a lesson learned – that torture doesn’t work.” She further stated, “It’s my very strong belief that one day this report should be declassified. The president has refused to do so at this time, but I’m pleased the report will go into his archives as part of his presidential records, will not be subjected to destruction, and will one day be available for declassification.” The ABA has supported public release of the report with portions redacted that are essential to national security, maintaining that the release would demonstrate that the United States is committed to fulfilling its international obligations to investigate allegations of torture.

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