Barack Obama advised to make laws to ensure US 'torture' techniques are never used again

Polls suggest most Americans believe the CIA methods were entirely justified

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The Independent US

Barack Obama has received recommendations for a series of policy changes designed to ensure that the US government never again resorts to the sort of enhanced interrogation techniques used on detainees in the aftermath of 9/11.

The recommendations, presented to the president in a letter from the outgoing chair of the Senate committee, comes despite polls suggesting most Americans believe the CIA methods – that included waterboarding and sleep deprivation of up to 180 hours –  were entirely justified.

In a letter to Mr Obama released on Monday, Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein outlined a series of recommendations "intended to make sure that the United States never again engages in actions that you have acknowledged were torture." The documented shortcomings in the CIA's decade-old interrogation programme "should prompt additional oversight and better sharing of information for all covert action and significant intelligence collection programs," she said.

 

It comes after the release of the controversial Senate committee report last month which concluded that the agency's interrogation programme was more brutal than previously understood and failed to produce substantial intelligence that couldn't have been obtained through traditional methods.

Feinstein is expected to introduce legislation in the upcoming Congress to codify Obama's executive order banning torture and prohibiting the CIA from detaining prisoners. She also called for a series of policy changes designed to force the CIA to better manage its covert actions and for Congress to better informed about them. The letter also urges clearer rules to ensure more accountability at the CIA, an agency where managerial operational negligence has often gone unpunished.

CIA Director John Brennan has denounced brutal interrogations and acknowledged mistakes, but has described the Senate report as one-sided.  Ms Feinstein's proposals come amid polls showing that the report, at least initially, has failed to convince a majority of the public that what the CIA did to detainees after the terror attacks of September 11th was unjustified.

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