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Rights Groups Pull Out Of British Torture Inquiry

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron launched an inquiry into the torture allegations last year.
Human rights groups will not take part in an inquiry into claims that British security services were complicit in the alleged torture of terrorism suspects on foreign soil.

The independent inquiry, announced by Prime Minister David Cameron in July last year, is to examine allegations that British secret services were involved in the torture of terrorism suspects on foreign soil after the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.

Ten rights groups, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, said on August 4 that they would not participate in the inquiry -- which is yet to start -- because it risks becoming a "whitewash."

The inquiry team issued a statement saying they would go ahead with their work and hoped the groups would reconsider.

The issue of British officials' alleged complicity in the torture of terrorism suspects was thrust into the spotlight last year when a British court ordered the publication of previously classified information, which showed British secret services knew an Ethiopian-born British resident had been mistreated in U.S. custody.

compiled from agency reports