This may be the first in a long series of cases in which foreign courts step into the legal vaccuum left by US inaction in the face of the massive and obvious war crimes of the Bush assministration.
An Italian judge ordered the arrests of 13 people in the purported CIA abduction of an imam, who then was sent to Egypt, the Milan prosecutor’s office said Friday. An Italian official said earlier the 13 were CIA officers involved in U.S. anti-terrorism efforts.
The 13 are suspected of seizing Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, known as Abu Omar, on the streets of Milan on Feb. 17, 2003, and sending him to Egypt, where he reportedly was tortured, Milan prosecutor Manlio Claudio Minale said in a statement.
The U.S. Embassy in Rome and the CIA in Washington declined to comment.
Minale said the suspects remained at large, and Italian authorities would ask the United States and Egypt for assistance in the case.
Prosecutors believe the officers seized Omar as part of the CIA’s ”extraordinary rendition” program, in which terror suspects are transferred to third countries without court approval, according to reports Friday in newspapers Corriere della Sera and Il Giorno.