Aug 2, 2017 by Prof. Marcello Ferrada de Noli
As a legalized concept of international acceptance, Human Rights is considered a ’modern’ instrument, brought by the United Nations in 1948 after the ‘horrors of the Second World War’. However, the legal protection of individuals under arrest can be traced centuries before. Persian king Cyrus the Great issued 2559 years ago a law establishing civil rights for all, to be applied even to those defeated in war, which included the detainees. The Romans followed suit in its “natural law” codex, then the Magna Carta of 1215, the French Revolution’s ‘Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen’ of 1789, etc.
Through that historical context, it is difficult to find a more flagrant – and also a more comprehensive– violation to the individuals’ civil rights, than the practice of ‘extraordinary renditions’. In essence, ‘extraordinary rendition’ is about the kidnapping of a foreign citizen by Intelligence or enforcement government agencies, act which is perpetrated in yet another country. This practice was commenced by the US government in 1987, with the abduction of a Lebanese citizen from a yacht that was in Italian waters. Read More