Religious leaders praise Obama orders to ban torture, close Guantánamo
Second day in office
Feb 24, 2009
A broad range of religious leaders and human rights advocates have applauded President Obama’s executive order that essentially ends torture of detainees held by the U.S. government.
On his second full day in office, January 22, the president signed an executive order on “ensuring lawful interrogations” to “promote the safe, lawful and humane treatment of individuals in United States custody.”
Fulfilling a campaign promise, Obama also signed an order stating that the U.S. detention facility at Guántanamo Bay, Cuba, should be closed within a year. Another order was issued to shut permanently the CIA’s network of secret prisons overseas.
“We can abide by a rule that says we don’t torture,” Obama said, “and still effectively obtain the intelligence that we need.”