Rights groups call for renewed CIA prison probe in Lithuania

Human rights groups are calling on Lithuanian prosecutors to reopen a criminal investigation into a secret CIA detention center set up in the country.The Lithuanian Prosecutor General recently closed the investigation into whether State Security Department (SSD) officials had colluded with the CIA to create and operate the secret sites on 14 January 2011, citing a lack of evidence. But human rights groups Amnesty International and Reprieve claim to have evidence that the site was used to interrogate terrorism suspects.

When it closed the investigation last week, the Lithuanian prosecutor said SSD officials had committed “disciplinary offenses” by failing to notify top government officials of the operation, but that a statute of limitations on the investigation of the SSD had run out.

Lithuania’s president and top national security lawmaker on Wednesday also questioned the decision to close the investigation, saying prosecutors should reopen the case if they receive new evidence.

A parliamentary probe last year concluded that although the prison was built in Lithuania, a Baltic country in northeast Europe, there was no evidence that it was used to interrogate terrorism suspects.

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