From ANSA news agency in Italy:
ROME – Four Nobel prize winners have backed an appeal to the European Parliament on the US’s controversial policy of extraordinary rendition.
The appeal calls on the EP to urge national governments – especially Italy – to “shed full light on the uncomfortable truths” and respect resolutions by the EP and the Council of Europe which have condemned “these illicit means of fighting terrorism”.
Italy, in particular, should forward extradition requests for 26 CIA agents accused of kidnapping a Muslim cleric in 2003, instead of trying to derail a Milan trial into the case, the petition says.
Italy’s Constitutional Court on Wednesday said it would assess, over the coming months, the government’s charge that the Milan prosecutors overstepped their constitutional bounds and broke state secrecy laws.
The three Nobel peace prize winners – Adolfo Perez Esquivel of Argentina and Mairead Corrigan and Betty Williams of Northern Ireland – have joined Italy’s Nobel-prizewinning playwright Dario Fo and dozens of other human-rights advocates in signing the petition.
Other signatories include top Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon, who has himself opened a renditions probe, war-zone doctor Gino Strada, philosopher Gianni Vattimo and campaigning priest Father Luigi Ciotti.
Veteran film director Ettore Scola and Fo‘s actress wife Franca Rame have also signed up. Rame is a Senator for the Italy of Values (IDV) party, a member of Italian Premier Romano Prodi’s centre-left coalition.