Egypt Vice President Omar Suleiman: Extraordinary Rendition Coordinator?
Appointed as the “first step for transfer of power,” according to sources within Mubarak’s ruling party, Suleiman had served as the head of Egyptian central intelligence until being tapped for vice president on Saturday.
Extraordinary rendition is an extrajudicial procedure in which suspected terrorists are transferred illegally to a country that is known to use torture during interrogation. The United States was widely accused of using such renditions during the War on Terror from 2001-2006.
The appointment of Suleiman – and new Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq – has led many analysts and protesters to question the extent to which regime change will actually come about in Egypt.
CNN Egypt correspondent Ben Wederman reports that:
New VP Omar Suleiman and PM Ahmed Shafiq are as Mubarak as Mubarak. Egyptians in no mood for more of the same. #Jan25 #Egypt
Former CNN Middle East correspondent Octavia Nasr and documentary filmmaker Michael Moore have both also commented on Sulaiman’s involvement in extraordinary rendition, writing:
:) RT @MMFlint C'mon U.S. networks--who of u will b 1st 2 say it: "New Egyptian VP ran our secret rendition program in #Egypt." Prize to 1st
President Obama issued an Executive Order to cease extraordinary rendition and look into any possible cases of extraordinary and erroneous rendition on his second day in office.