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Dear Mark,

Today, as Congress returns from Thanksgiving break, Senators are poised to take a vote on bringing back torture.

An amendment filed by Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) would effectively revive so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques”, overruling the Executive Order issued by President Obama on his second day in office that banned the use of torture and shut down the CIA’s secret interrogation program.

As the retired admirals and generals who stood with President Obama on that historic day have made clear, torture undermines our national credibility, hinders our ability to effectively fight terrorism, and betrays our core values. And as the interrogators we at Human Rights First have worked with over the years know, torture is counterproductive in interrogations.

In addition, the defense bill this year contains several alarming provisions related to detainee policy, including ones that would undermine our federal courts. Fortunately, an amendment filed by Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO) would strip these troublesome provisions from the legislation.

Votes on these amendments could take place as early as today.

Tell your Senators to support the Udall amendment #1107 and oppose the Ayotte amendment #1068. Take action on this pressing issue now!

C. Dixon Osburn
Human Rights First

Human Rights First is an independent American advocacy organization that challenges our country to live up to its ideals. We press American institutions to respect human rights and the rule of law. When they don’t, we step in to demand accountability and justice. Around the world, we work in places where we can harness American influence to secure core freedoms
Human Rights First,
333 Seventh Avenue, 13th Floor, New York, NY 10001-5004
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