UN torture envoy concerned at water-boarding rhetoric in US race

March 9, 2016 16:54

GENEVA - The UN torture investigator voiced concern on Wednesday at calls by some Republican candidates in the US presidential race to authorize water-boarding in interrogating detainees, noting that it was illegal under domestic and international law.

Republican candidate Donald Trump softened his stance on torture last Friday, saying he would not order the US military to break international laws on how to treat terrorism suspects. The night before, he indicated he might order US military to break the law on interrogation tactics, including waterboarding.

Trump's rival and number two in the Republican primaries, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, said last month he would only allow limited use of the practice. He said he didn't believe waterboarding met the international definition for torture.

"Candidates in the United States have again discussed whether waterboarding is torture or not and have actually promised to bring it back and to bring even harsher techniques,"

Juan Mendez, UN special rappporteur on torture, told a news briefing in Geneva.

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