3 December 2011

Zambia: State Won't Arrest Bush - Minister

Zambia will not arrest former US president George W. Bush during his African tour for violating international torture laws, the foreign minister said Saturday.

Rights group Amnesty International had Thursday urged Ethiopia, Tanzania and Zambia to arrest Bush during the five-day tour to promote efforts to fight diseases like cancer, AIDS and malaria.

"On what basis does Amnesty International want us to arrest Mr Bush? Tell them to hang, and also please ask them to create their own country and wait for Mr Bush to visit their country so that they can arrest him to suit their wish and not here in Zambia," Foreign Minister Chishimba Kambwili told AFP.

Bush is in Zambia on the second stop of the tour, having arrived in Tanzania on Thursday.

Kambwili said Zambia would only arrest Bush if the International Criminal Court (ICC) and other international organisations such as the United Nations asked the southern African country's government to do so.

Amnesty made a similar appeal to Canada in October when Bush visited British Columbia for an economic summit.

The group argued that Bush authorised the use of "enhanced interrogation techniques" and "waterboarding" on detainees held in secret by the Central Intelligence Agency between 2002 and 2009.

Amnesty's case relies on the public record, US documents accessed through freedom of information requests, Bush's own memoir and a Red Cross report critical of the United States' war on terror policies.

The group cites several instances of alleged torture of detainees at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, naval facility, in Afghanistan and in Iraq by the US military. - ANP/AFP

Ads by Google

Copyright © 2011 Radio Netherlands Worldwide. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.