Latvia denies it’s home to CIA base

A government spokesman says Latvia is not one of the East European countries that reportedly have been home to secret CIA bases where suspected al Qaeda members are interrogated.

The location of all official detention sites is publicly available information, Arno Pjatkins, press secretary for Prime Minister Aigars Kalvītis, told the Web portal Delfi on Nov. 3.

The Latvian government’s denial was one of several from East European officials following a Nov. 2 report in The Washington Post. The newspaper reported that the CIA over the last four years has used secret bases in eight countries, include “several democracies in Eastern Europe” that were not named.

The secret detention sites, the newspaper said, were used to hide the interrogations from the public and even from Congress.

Although the paper reported that Thailand and Afghanistan are among the eight countries, it did not name the other nations at the request of U.S. officials.

“They argued that the disclosure might disrupt counterterrorism efforts in those countries and elsewhere and could make them targets of possible terrorist retaliation,” the newspaper reported.

The New York-based Human Rights Watch on Nov. 3 suggested two of the countries might be Poland and Romania. The organization used flight records to draw its conclusion. Polish and Romanian offjcials denied that their countries have CIA bases.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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