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'I'm not a doctor but...': Ex-CIA chief defends rectal rehydration of inmates

Michael Hayden claimed the report is wrong when it says the technique was used for interrogation.

Source: CNN/YouTube

THE FORMER HEAD of the CIA General Michael Hayden defended the use of rectal rehydration on terror suspects.

Speaking to CNN, Hayden denied that rectal rehydration and feeding were used as a method of interrogation, insisting that they were used as a “medical procedure” for reasons of “detainee health”.

A US Senate report published on Tuesday said that the procedure was one of those used as a method of interrogation but Hayden suggested during the interview that the authors of the report were not impartial.

The report states that the procedure was indeed used to force feed inmates who were on hunger-strike, this included an instance of a detainee being rectally fed a puréed mixture of hummus, pasta, nuts and raisins.

The report also outlines that at least one inmate was subjected to rectal rehydration “without a determination of medical need”.

The report states that this was done to illustrate the interrogator’s “total control over the detainee.”

But Hayden took issue with interviewer Jake Tapper’s assertion that the methods were not medically necessary.

“Jake, I’m not a doctor and neither are you but what I’m told is this is one of the ways that the body is rehydrated,” he said.

“The Democrats in the (Senate) committee have used one half-assed unwarranted comment in one email to justify the story, that you have now bought hook, line and sinker, that we used this to abuse other human beings.”

Yesterday, former US vice-president Dick Cheney described the damning report into the CIA’s torture of terror suspects as “full of crap”.

Read: UN official calls for Bush and Cheney to be charged with torture >

Read: Department of Foreign Affairs: Shannon Airport was not used to facilitate torture >

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Rónán Duffy

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