UN expert: 'Targeted killings' may be war crimes

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
June 2, 2010 18:00

 
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GENEVA — A UN human rights expert has urged governments to come clean on their methods for killing suspected terrorists and insurgents or risk war crimes prosecutions.

Philip Alston told countries to declare the rules they follow when carrying out "targeted killings," publish figures on civilian casualties and prove they have attempted non-lethal ways to capture or incapacitate suspects.

The independent UN investigator on extrajudicial killings says the use of lethal drones by intelligence agencies is particularly problematic because of the lack of oversight.

Alston said in a 29-page report published Wednesday that agencies such as the CIA are more likely to face war crimes charges than regular troops who are more familiar with rules of war,

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