Bush Cancels Switzerland Trip After Threat of Arrest for Torture Crimes

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Former Pres. George W. Bush is denying that the sudden cancellation of his scheduled speech at a Jewish charity event in Switzerland has anything to do with the fact that human rights groups promised he would be arrested on arrival.

Human rights lawyer: ‘I think George Bush’s world is a very small place at the moment’

Bush was to be the keynote speaker at Keren Hayesod’s annual dinner on February 12 in Geneva. But pressure has been building on the Swiss government to arrest him and open a criminal investigation if he enters the Alpine country.

Criminal complaints against Bush alleging torture have been lodged in Geneva, court officials say.

Since a protest was also planned for the Bush visit, event organizers say the Worst President Ever is actually canceling due to security concerns.

But groups including the New York-based Human Rights Watch and International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH) said the cancellation was linked to growing moves to hold Bush accountable for torture, including waterboarding. He has admitted in his memoirs and television interviews to ordering use of the interrogation technique that simulates drowning…

“President Bush has admitted he ordered waterboarding which everyone considers to be a form of torture under international law. Under the Convention against Torture, authorities would have been obliged to open an investigation and either prosecute or extradite George Bush,” [attorney for Human Rights Watch Reed] Brody said.

When he ordered that waterboarding and other “enhanced interrogation techniques” be used on detainees, Bush violated the 1987 treaty, which, unfortunately for him, Switzerland and 146 other countries signed. Then again, so did the United States.

“I’m surprised he (Bush) would even consider visiting a country that has ratified the torture convention and which takes its responsibilities seriously,” said Brody.

“I think George Bush’s world is a very small place at the moment,” he said. “He may enjoy some kind of impunity in the United States, but other countries will not treat him so indulgently.”

4 Comments

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  • Nikolai
    February 5, 2011 - 7:46 pm | Permalink

    They should have just let bush come ahead and arrested him! Since when do you give a criminal a “heads-up?!”

  • February 5, 2011 - 11:12 pm | Permalink

    “You mean Bush actually tortured people?” The fat man was bewildered and hurt. I felt sorry for him. “I liked Bush. He was a real American. I thought.” My interview with an ex-Bush fiend:

    http://tinyurl.com/6y64qef

  • February 6, 2011 - 8:28 am | Permalink

    That 1987 treaty was signed by Reagan, and what’s noteworthy about it, as the attorney said, is that it requires officials in the signatory countries to arrest torturers — and not just when and if they visit another country. The treaty obliges officials in any signatory country to enter any other signatory country and arrest torturers if officials in the torturer’s own country won’t do it. This is not just a right granted by the treaty, it’s a responsibility. Although it is unlikely that the UK, France or Germany, say, would send SWAT teams into the US to arrest Bush, Cheney, Condoleeza Rice and the others who designed the CIA torture regimen in the White House, technically they are not really even safe in their homes.

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