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Belarus concerned about tortures in CIA prisons in Europe

MINSK, 5 March (BelTA) – Belarus pointed out the problem of tortures in secret prisons of the US Central Intelligence Agency in several European countries at the 22nd session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, the press service of the Belarusian Foreign Ministry told BelTA.

In particular, at the session Mr Yevgeny Lazarev, Deputy Head of the Central Office for Multilateral Diplomacy of the Belarusian Foreign Ministry, made a speech as part of an interactive dialogue with the special rapporteurs on tortures and the status of human rights activists.

The representative of Belarus remarked that the special rapporteur on the status of human rights activists had responded to Belarus’ recommendation regarding the need to monitor the situation involving human rights activists in Western countries. For the first time the report made by the special rapporteur on this matter mentioned Canada, France, Spain, Netherlands, Switzerland, and the USA. The special rapporteur had also recently visited a European Union country – Ireland. It turned out that the situation in Ireland was not ideal and the country just like other European Union countries should first put things right domestically before getting concerned about the human rights situation in other countries.

Yevgeny Lazarev drew attention of the special rapporteur on tortures to the situation regarding tortures in the CIA’s secret prisons in several European countries. He underlined that no relevant investigations are in progress in the countries that reportedly have such prisons. Czechia was cited as an example. The country has refused to investigate the presence of the CIA’s secret prisons without a relevant request of the UN Human Rights Council. Belarus suggested that the special rapporteur on tortures should visit Czechia for the sake of an independent investigation in line with international standards into the situation regarding the secret prisons.