Condoleezza Rice, formerly national security adviser now US secretary of state, Donald Rumsfeld, the former US defence secretary, Colin Powell, who was secretary of state, George Tenet, the former CIA director and John Ashcroft, the former US attorney-general also reportedly attended the meetings
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The US vice-president approved the use of waterboarding against al-Qaeda suspects, US media reports have said.
Dick Cheney and other senior Bush administration officials attended meetings to approve harsh interrogation techniques, which took place after the September 11, 2001 attacks in the US, ABC news and The Associated Press reported.
The officials took care to insulate George Bush, the US president, from the meetings, where waterboarding - simulating drowning and feelings of suffocation by causing reflexive choking and gagging - sleep deprivation and slaps and pushes were approved, according to the reports.
Participants were said to be members of a National Security Council's Principals Committee, a senior group of advisors to the president Bush.
Lengthy Pentagon review delays report on terrorism interrogations
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WASHINGTON — The release of a report on the FBI's role in the interrogations of prisoners in Afghanistan, Guantanamo Bay and Iraq has been delayed for months because the Pentagon is reviewing how much of it should remain classified, according to the Justice Department's watchdog.
Glenn Fine, the Justice Department's inspector general, told McClatchy that his office has pressed the Defense Department to finish its review, but officials there haven't completed the process "in a timely fashion."
"Why that happened, I don't know," Fine said in an interview this week.
"It's been slower than we would like, and it's taken a long time. We provided our report to them months ago, and we are pushing hard to conclude this process."
Fine is investigating whether FBI employees participated in detainee abuse, whether they witnessed or reported incidents of abuse, and how such reports were handled by the bureau.
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