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Last Updated: Saturday, 9 June 2007, 17:39 GMT 18:39 UK
New rendition flights probe call
Rendition flight protestors
Protests against rendition flights have been held at Scottish airports
Fresh calls have been made for a full inquiry into whether American planes carrying terrorist suspects to be tortured have landed in Scotland.

Campaigners said it must finally be established whether the country had been used to refuel so-called "extraordinary rendition" flights.

The demands followed a police inquiry which dismissed claims rendition flights had landed at English airports.

The CIA flights are alleged to carry suspects to secret detention camps.

Campaigners have claimed in the past that rendition flights regularly landed at Glasgow and Prestwick airports to refuel before carrying terror suspects to prisons elsewhere in Europe, Africa and the Middle East where they may have faced torture.

I think it is high time we had a formal inquiry and that really needs to be on both sides of the border
Shami Chakrabarti
Liberty

The English inquiry by the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) had examined specific allegations made by campaign group Liberty in the wake of an investigation by the Guardian newspaper.

Liberty claimed 210 CIA flights carrying terrorist suspects had landed at English airports since 2001 and provided dates and locations, but Acpo said there was no evidence to substantiate the allegations.

Acpo released its findings just hours after the Council of Europe said there was evidence to prove the CIA had run secret jails in Europe.

The Council of Europe had previously also alleged rendition flights did pass through the UK and other European countries.

Shami Chakrabarti, director of Liberty, slammed the Acpo inquiry as a "whitewash", and said she still wanted to know whether Prestwick and Glasgow had been used as stop-off points by the CIA flights.

'Cast-iron assurances'

She said: "I think it is high time we had a formal inquiry and that really needs to be on both sides of the border.

"The work of the Guardian journalists suggests that Prestwick has had a lot of CIA flight activity through it.

"What we need to investigate is who or what was on those planes, and has Britain's airspace or British air bases been used as a transit post for extraordinary rendition?"

Ms Chakrabarti's demand was echoed by Christine Grahame, the SNP MSP for the South of Scotland.

She said: "I'd dearly love an inquiry. It would be much better if it could be held in Scotland but failing that I think an inquiry through European channels is likely to be more reliable than one through Westminster."

But the Labour MP for Ayr Central, Brian Donohoe, said: "I have been given cast-iron assurances by two Secretaries of State that there have been no rendition flights through Prestwick since 1998."




VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Liberty calls for an inquiry into Prestwick



SEE ALSO
CIA rejects secret jails report
08 Jun 07 |  Europe
First CIA rendition trial opens
08 Jun 07 |  Europe
Greens hold US flight row talks
01 Aug 06 |  Glasgow and West
Fury at airport bomb flights role
27 Jul 06 |  Glasgow and West
'Rendition' protests at airports
25 Jun 06 |  Glasgow and West
Call for 'rendition' flight probe
07 Jun 06 |  Glasgow and West

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