The US Department of Justice has opened a wide-ranging investigation into reports from the FBI about the military's use of coercive and abusive tactics against prisoners held in US custody at Guantanamo Bay and in Iraq, officials announced on Thursday. \nThe investigation, initiated recently by the inspector-general at the Justice Department, will examine not only how reports of abuse witnessed by FBI agents at the US base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and in Iraq were handled, but also whether FBI agents themselves took part in any improper methods of interrogation at the prisons, which are run by the military. \nInvestigators "want to look at what happened to these complaints, and also did FBI agents participate in the abuse?" said a senior law enforcement official who spoke on condition of anonymity. "Were they more than simply witnesses?" \nThe Justice Department inquiry parallels a separate investigation by the military into the tactics used by its interrogators at Guantanamo Bay. \nA raft of documents, released to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) under the Freedom of Information Act, has revealed concerns by FBI agents stationed at the Guantanamo Bay prison who said in e-mail messages and memos that they had witnessed military interrogators using "coercive tactics," beating prisoners, and grabbing their genitals. \nChained \nFBI personnel also told of detainees being chained for up to 24 hours and left on the cold floor to urinate and defecate on themselves. \nIn one case, an agent said, a detainee who was nearly unconscious had pulled out much of his hair during the night. \nSome FBI personnel reported their deep concerns about the tactics to senior agency personnel, including the director, Robert Mueller. \nOne component of the inspector-general's inquiry will be to determine how those internal concerns were handled within the FBI and whether they were relayed to proper authorities in the military and elsewhere in the administration. \nThe documents obtained by the ACLU suggest the possibility that some FBI agents may have acquiesced in or ignored abusive military tactics at Guantanamo Bay at times, but they do not appear to offer evidence of specific abuses carried out by anyone at the FBI. \nFull Cooperation \nA senior official at the FBI said on Thursday that he was unaware that any complaints of abuse carried out by its agents at Guantanamo Bay had been submitted, but he pledged the bureau's full cooperation with the inspector-general's investigation. \n"This is a healthy process," the official said of the review. \n"We'll bend over backwards to help and do whatever needs to be done," he said. \nIn a letter to the Justice Department inspector-general on Dec. 21, after the first batches of documents from the ACLU became public, Representative John Conyers, the ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, and five other lawmakers, all Democrats, made an "urgent request" for the office to investigate the reports of torture and to determine how presidential or military directives played into such tactics. \nGlenn Fine, inspector-general at the Justice Department, responded on Jan. 4, saying that his office had already begun "examining the involvement of Federal Bureau of Investigation staff in either observing or participating in the alleged abuse of detainees at the Guantanamo facility and at Abu Ghraib," according to a copy of the letter provided by a member of Congress to the New York Times. \nThe inspector-general's office began investigating the treatment of prisoners before the ACLU documents became public, officials said. \nIt was not clear whether an internal complaint or separate concerns had led the inspector general's office to launch the investigation.
‘HERO OF THE ERA’: President Tsai Ing-wen expressed deep sadness at Lee’s passing, and told the government to assist his family with all their needs Former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) passed away at 7:24pm yesterday at Taipei Veterans General Hospital. He was 97 years old. The hospital stated the cause of death as septic shock and multiple organ failure. Lee had been hospitalized there since February, when he choked on a mouthful of milk at home. He was later diagnosed with pulmonary infiltrates and aspiration pneumonia. The hospital said that Lee had been treated with antibiotics, but that his health had not improved, as his advanced age and diabetes had inhibited his immune system and led to recurring infections. During his hospitalization, Lee underwent daily kidney dialysis, which removed
‘WEAK POSITIVE’: The man arrived in Taiwan in May and was quarantined for two weeks, Chen Shih-chung said, adding that he might be infected a long time ago The government is considering tightening mask-wearing rules again in light of a potential domestic COVID-19 infection, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said yesterday. The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) confirmed seven new COVID-19 cases, six of which are imported. The other case involves a Belgian engineer who entered Taiwan on May 3 and remained in quarantine until May 17, said Chen, who heads the CECC. Although the source of infection has yet to be identified, the case could end the nation’s record of not having any domestic cases in the previous 110 days. The Belgian, in his 20s, is a technician
RECEIVING TREATMENT: President Tsai Ing-wen, Vice President William Lai and Premier Su Tseng-chang visited former president Lee Teng-hui yesterday morning Taipei Veterans General Hospital yesterday rebutted speculation that former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) had died a day earlier, saying that he was weak, but receiving treatment. The hospital said the 97-year-old Lee was not in good condition and needed ongoing care, adding that if there are any changes in his condition, it would make those public. The comments came after rumors emerged online on Tuesday that Lee had died after being hospitalized since early February. Soon after the unsubstantiated rumors emerged, reporters started flocking to the hospital seeking confirmation. Lee was admitted to Taipei Veterans General Hospital on Feb. 8 after choking while drinking
ROAD TO HISTORY: When Lee Teng-hui joined the KMT, the likelihood of a Taiwanese becoming ROC president, much less its first directly elected one, was hard to imagine Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), who was born on Jan. 15, 1923, in the farming community of Sanshi Village, Taihoku Prefecture — now New Taipei City’s Sanzhi District (三芝) — during the Japanese colonial era, and rose to become mayor of Taipei and not only the Republic of China’s (ROC) first Taiwan-born president, but its first directly elected one as well. Educated in the Japanese educational system of the time, Lee, who spoke Japanese, Hoklo (also known as Taiwanese), Mandarin and English, won a scholarship to Kyoto Imperial University, but his studies were interrupted by World War II. He earned a bachelor’s