Representatives from 57 countries on Tuesday signed a long-negotiated treaty prohibiting governments from holding people in secret detention. The United States declined to endorse the document, saying its text did not meet U.S. expectations.
State Department spokesman Sean McCormack declined to comment, except to say that the United States helped draft the treaty but that the final wording “did not meet our expectations.”
The Associated Press reported that McCormack declined to comment on whether the U.S. stance was influenced by the Bush administration's policy of sending terrorism suspects to CIA-run prisons overseas, which President Bush acknowledged in September.
The convention defines forced disappearance as the arrest, detention or kidnapping of a person by state agents or affiliates and subsequent denials about the detention or location of the individual.