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Italy's high court to rule on CIA trial in Milan

Italy's high court to rule on CIA trial in Milan

Italy's Constitutional Court heard arguments Tuesday on a government motion to throw out charges against 26 Americans accused of involvement in the alleged CIA kidnapping of a terror suspect in Milan.
The government says the Milan judge who issued the indictments unlawfully relied on classified information to justify the charges. It asked the Constitutional Court, Italy's highest court, to throw out the indictments.
It was not clear if the long-delayed decision would be issued later Tuesday or in subsequent days, court officials said.
The trial in Milan was suspended until March 18 pending the ruling by the Constitutional Court, which has delayed a decision on the issue several times.
The court was also expected to deliberate on other dueling motions by defendants and prosecutors seeking definition of what information is classified.
The American suspects _ all but one identified by prosecutors as CIA agents _ are being tried in absentia. They are accused of kidnapping an Egyptian terror suspect from a Milan street on Feb. 17, 2003 in an "extraordinary rendition" operation coordinated by the CIA and Italian intelligence.
Seven Italians are also charged. The government denies any role in the operation.
Italian prosecutors say Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, was then transferred to U.S. bases in Italy and Germany before being moved to Egypt, where he was imprisoned for four years. Nasr, who in the meantime has been released, said he was tortured.
Premier Silvio Berlusconi and his predecessor, Romano Prodi, have warned that any testimony that divulged operations between the states would be protected as classified.


Updated : 2021-05-19 05:59 GMT+08:00