CIA Shuts Secret Prisons, Bans Outside Interrogators
Panetta also bans outside contractors from conducting interrogations
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2009 7:51 PM CDT
CIA Director Leon Panetta speaks with reporters in February.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
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(Newser) – The CIA is permanently shutting down its secret overseas prisons and will forbid outside contractors from conducting any future interrogations, the New York Times reports. CIA chief Leon Panetta said the so-called "black sites"—thought to be in places such as Afghanistan, Thailand, and Poland—haven't been used for months as part of the Obama administration's break from the controversial program of George Bush.

The operation had been rife with allegations of harsh interrogation and torture. "CIA officers do not tolerate, and will continue to promptly report, any inappropriate behavior or allegations of abuse," said Panetta. All future interrogations will be done in accord with the "approaches authorized and listed in the Army Field Manual," he said. In particular, waterboarding is now off limits, notes the BBC.