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US Pressures US on Drone Attacks, Demands Footage Release, Inquiry

US Pressures US on Drone Attacks, Demands Footage Release, Inquiry
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UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Counter-Terrorism Ben Emmerson called on the US to release the footage of its deadly assassination drone attacks in different parts of the globe, otherwise face an international inquiry.
US Pressures US on Drone Attacks, Demands Footage Release, Inquiry
Emmerson said on Sunday that the US is coming under mounting global pressure over its use of assassination drones, adding that he is preparing a report on the issue for the next session of the Human Rights Council in March.
He also urged Washington to open itself to an independent probe into the legality of such attacks that will "remain at the top of the UN political agenda until some consensus and transparency has been achieved."
"We can't make a decision on whether it is lawful or unlawful if we do not have the data. The recommendation I have made is that users of targeted killing technology should be required to subject themselves, in the case of each and every death, to impartial investigation. If they do not establish a mechanism to do so, it will be my recommendation that the UN should put the mechanisms in place through the Human Rights Council, the General Assembly and the Office of the High Commissioner," he said.

Emmerson also lashed out at the US President Barack Obama Administration for "the position that it will neither confirm nor deny the existence of the drone program, whilst allowing senior officials to give public justifications of its supposed legality in personal lectures and interviews."

A large number of lawsuits have been filed against the US government in different parts of the world over such attacks with the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) and the American Civil Liberties Union being among the institutions that have launched legal actions, the official stated.
CCR says an estimated 2,500 people have been killed in drone strikes since Obama came to power in January 2009.
US Pressures US on Drone Attacks, Demands Footage Release, Inquiry US drones have been active in combat and espionage missions in several countries including Yemen, Somalia, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The US pilotless drones were initiated by former US President George W. Bush, but have escalated under the Obama administration.
The US claims these drones target militants but many of the victims turn out to be civilians.
Pakistan in particular has objected to the hundreds of drone strikes launched against its territory by the US, arguing that it violates their sovereignty as well as undermining support for their own war on militancy. The US has ruled out ending the strikes. Only during the past 48 hours, 21 people have been killed in Pakistan's northwestern tribal region near borders with Afghanistan.

Source: News Agencies, edited by