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WASHINGTON – The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence today voted to adopt a report on its investigation into the use of torture and abuse by the CIA. The report is the result of an exhaustive three-year review into the CIA’s interrogation, detention, and extraordinary rendition program. The vote to adopt the support was bipartisan, under the leadership of committee chair Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-CA and with significant support from Sen. John McCain, R-AZ.
On his second full day in office, President Obama ordered the CIA to close its prisons and comply with the Army Field Manual on Interrogations. The report adopted today is the first comprehensive oversight by Congress over the programs terminated by Obama.
“The committee took an important step toward making sure that history will not repeat itself. The investigation and report are also an important precedent for establishing checks and balances between Congress and a CIA that has often flouted both the law and American values,” said Christopher Anders, senior legislative counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union. “Only by knowing what happened at the CIA can Congress ensure that it does not happen again.”
The report, which remains classified, contains more than 6,000 pages and contains more than 35,000 footnotes and resulted from the committee’s review of more than 6 million pages of CIA records and other documents.
“The next step, of course, is for the report to be made public, so that all Americans can understand the harm that the CIA’s use of torture caused to national security, American values, and to its often innocent victims,” said Laura W. Murphy, director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office. “Nothing good, and only bad, came from the torture program. But until the report is made public, most Americans will hear about the CIA and its torture program only from fictionalized movies and television shows, and not from this still-classified 6,000 page report on the actual facts.”