UK
05/02/2013 15:21 GMT

Extraordinary Rendition: Israel, Russia And France 'Surprisingly' Not On List

More than 20 European nations offered support to covert CIA operations to kidnap terror suspects - but many Western countries are conspicuously absent from the list of the 54 states which took part in extraordinary rendition, according to a new report.

A groundbreaking document published by the Open Society Foundation, on Tuesday shows that 54 countries, a quarter of the world's nations, cooperated with the CIA's extraordinary rendition programme.

jacques chirac

France, under President Jacques Chirac, did not take part in extraordinary rendition, according to the report

But France, which famously avoided involvement in the Iraq war, Holland, Norway and Russia do not feature on the list of countries which supplied help to the CIA's covert international detention and torture operation which follow the 9/11 attacks.

Reprieve investigator Dr Crofton Black told HuffPost UK the absence of those countries "is something potentially surprising."

He added: "There's essentially two sorts of complicity, where your intelligence services are taking part in interrogations of suspects.

"And there's the more passive complicity, where you allow yourselves to be used as a logistical hub, but no prisoners are transported there, places like Portugal.

"The virtue of this report is that we can start to ask questions. We can question governments about planes that landed there."

Of the Scandinavian nations and northern European nations, Sweden, Denmark and Finland took part in extrordinary rendition, but Norway did not, according to the research from the Open Society Foundation.

Dr Black said it was "very surprising" Russia was not on the list of those having taken part in extraordinary rendition co-operation, although Georgia is included in the list. Israel was also absent from the list.

Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Ireland and Austria took part, but France, Holland and Hungary did not.

Dr Black offered some explanation about why CIA planes may not have landed in certain countries. "It could often be a matter of geographical location. Many of these countries were re-routing points, where pilots and crew might rest on their way to or from a rendition operation, like Iceland, Ireland, Portugal, Spain are very common stop-over points.

"Finland is less common, and something missing from this report actually, is it was used as a dummy location. The flight logs said the plane was going to Finland and actually went to Lithuania.

"When they pick up a prisoner they would not let anyone near the plane, not to refuel, not to stop for a minute. They would drop someone in Afghanistan and then travel to refuel and rest in Uzbekistan."

The report states that Britain played an intimate role in extraordinary rendition, supporting interrogations and allowing the use of British airports and airspace.

THE 54 COUNTRIES WHICH PARTICIPATED IN EXTRAORDINARY RENDITION

1. Afghanistan

2. Albania

3. Algeria,

4. Australia

5. Austria

6. Azerbaijan

7. Belgium

8. Bosnia-Herzegovina

9. Canada

10. Croatia

11. Cyprus

12. Czech Republic

13. Denmark

14. Djibouti

15. Egypt

16. Ethiopia

17. Finland

18. Gambia

19. Georgia

20. Germany

21. Greece

22. Hong Kong

23. Iceland

24. Indonesia

25. Iran

26. Ireland

27. Italy

28. Jordan

29. Kenya

30. Libya

31. Lithuania

32. Macedonia

33. Malawi

34. Malaysia

35. Mauritania

36. Morocco

37. Pakistan

38. Poland

39. Portugal

40. Romania

41. Saudi Arabia

42. Somalia

43. South Africa

44. Spain

45. Sri Lanka

46. Sweden

47. Syria

48. Thailand

49. Turkey

50. United Arab Emirates

51. United Kingdom

52. Uzbekistan

53. Yemen

54. Zimbabwe