"Torture is always wrong": David Cameron responds to the CIA report

The Prime Minister comments on the shocking report published by Democrat senators on CIA torture techniques.

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David Cameron has responded to the alarming US report by Democrat senators on CIA interrogation activities in the wake of 9/11. Commenting on the shocking revelations about "brutal" techniques employed by the CIA on terrorism suspects, the Prime Minister said:

Let us be clear – torture is wrong, torture is always wrong.

For those of us who want to see a safer more secure world who want to see this extremism defeated, we won’t succeed if we lose our moral authority.

Now obviously after 9/11 there were things that happened that were wrong and we should be clear about the fact that they were wrong.

Clearly anticipating any questions emerging from this story that could drag Britain into the controversy, Cameron was keen to emphasise that he believes Britain has "dealt with" its position in relation torture policy. The United Kingdom appears on the list of countries that "facilitated CIA torture".

Cameron referred to the Intelligence and Security Committee looking into questions raised by the Gibson Inquiry into the treatment of detainees post-9/11, and added that he has, "issued guidance to all of our agents and others working around the world about how they have to handle themselves".

The report itself has stunned the world following its release yesterday. It suggests America's spies repeatedly lied to Congress and its foreign allies in an effort to cover up the scale and brutal nature of a secret global programme of torture.

The three-year investigation lays out in detail the apparently Cold War-style torture methods used by the CIA, such as waterboarding, sleep deprivation while standing, shackling, cold showers, diet and temperature manipulation, "rectal rehydration", and even mock executions. The report also details the terrible effect these methods had on the detainees.

Anoosh Chakelian is the New Statesman’s Britain editor.

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