Churches, other groups want Senate report on torture public

01/14/2014 6:33 PM

01/14/2014 6:35 PM

The North Carolina Council of Churches and three other groups plan a vigil at noon on Thursday outside Sen. Richard Burr’s office in Winston-Salem to urge Burr to vote for making a major Senate report on U.S. torture after 9/11 available to the public.

Burr is a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. The committee is expected to vote this month or in February on whether to make parts of the report public.

The 6,000 page report, which cost $40 million and took three years to complete, looked at the CIA’s detention of suspected al Qaida terrorists at secret prisons and harsh interrogation techniques such as water-boarding. See story.

More than 190 North Carolina faith leaders wrote to Burr in August asking him to support the release of the report, including bishops and other leaders. Burr responded in an Oct. 22 email, saying he opposed making the report public because it contained inaccuracies. See story.

The other groups organizing the vigil are North Carolina Stop Torture Now, a coalition that has focused on the role of Aero Contractors, based at the Johnston County Airport in Smithfield, in flying detainees to secret sites for interrogation; Veterans for Peace; and Quaker House in Fayetteville.

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