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2015.09.08 13:45

Lithuanian officials about the CIA’s alleged detention centre in Lithuania

Algirdas Acus2015.09.08 13:45

After US Senate released the report on the CIA’s torture, Lithuanian high ranking officials discuss the need to continue their own investigation into whether CIA ran its detention centre in Lithuania.

After US Senate released the report on the CIA’s torture, Lithuanian high ranking officials discuss the need to continue their own investigation into whether CIA ran its detention centre in Lithuania.

Lithuania is not directly named in the heavily redacted U.S. Senate report on CIA torture, but the description of a detention centre Violet is consistent with the 2009-2010 Lithuanian Parliament investigation, although the investigation had been inconclusive.

It found that CIA ran flights in and out of the country, but could not determine whether the site was used to house prisoners, because the U.S. officials refused to cooperate.

Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius told reporters that he now hopes for the Parliament to reopen the investigation.

Former chief of the Parliamentary National Security Committee says that committee has finished its investigation and now it would be relevant only for the Prosecutor General to investigate the details and consistencies with the US Senate’s report.

The Prosecutor’s General Office is conducting a pre-trial investigation into allegations that Saudi Arabian citizen Mustafa al-Hawsawi, currently in detention in Guantanamo, could have been kept at a secret Lithuanian-based American centre, in 2004-2006.

The Prosecutor’s General Office will ask the US for additional information.

Former Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus guaranteed that he had no information whatever about the detention centres in Lithuania.

SHOTLIST

Vs of archive of a building in Antaviliai near Nemenčine, a detention centre that could have allegedly been housed in this building

Soundbite (Lithuanian)

ALGIRDAS BUTKEVIČIUS, Lithuanian Prime Minister:
I think that discussion will emerge in the Parliament and I hope that the Parliament will continue its investigation.
(Reporter asks if investigation, on a political level, would be detrimental to Lithuanian–US relations)
No, I think it would not have such effect. They are good, and we hope to continue our good diplomatic and economic relations.

Soundbite (Lithuanian)

ARVYDAS ANUŠAUSKAS, former Chairman of the Parliamentary National Security Committee:
If we consider consistencies with the Lithuanian investigation, I think that Prosecutor General should evaluate these circumstances more closely. One aspect is that information for the Lithuanian political leaders had not been provided, at the time. Another thing is what we knew and what we heard on the level of rumours; we talk about unidentified million dollars as remuneration.

Cutaway
Soundbite (Lithuanian)

ARVYDAS ANUŠAUSKAS, former Chairman of the Parliamentary National Security Committee:
Considering Parliamentary investigation, we have already submitted all the material.

Soundbite (Lithuanian)

IRMANTAS MIKELIONIS, Chief Prosecutor for organized crime and corruption investigation department:
(On US report) The information is depersonalized, it was submitted to the media and this kind of information, the way it was introduced and formed, cannot provide us assumptions to treat the information as evidence in the criminal proceedings. The information is very important and relevant; therefore we plan to appeal to the United States and ask to provide us legal help.

Soundbite (Lithuanian)

VALDAS ADAMKUS, former President of Lithuania:
At the time, I invited all the chiefs of security services and asked very specifically if anyone had addressed them. Had anything been done, had anyone been let inside. All of them point-blank answered ‘no’ to me. I even asked where these persons could have been detained, if at all. I was told about the training centre in Nemenčine. I said that if so, we must get into cars and go and have a look around there. I was there myself with them. It was just a building in a beautiful forest, nothing more, just a common training centre that I had visited several times before.

Cutaway photo with the three Lithuanian Presidents

Soundbite (Lithuanian)

VALDAS ADAMKUS, former President of Lithuania:
What people say they know or don’t know, is not an argument. I know officers whom I trust and they ensured me that no such things happened. And I believe them.

Adamkus speaks to a journalist

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