U.S. held detainees in Kosovo

PARIS – The Council of Europe’s human rights commissioner, Alvaro Gil-Robles, has told France’s Le Monde newspaper that the U.S. military ran a Guantanamo Bay-type detention center in Kosovo, and that he was “shocked” by the conditions he witnessed there in 2002. However, he has no proof that the center, located within the U.S. military’s Camp Bondsteel, is linked to alleged CIA “ghost prison” operations.

The Council of Europe, which guarantees human rights in its 46 member states, has launched an investigation into the alleged secret prisons. Dick Marty, who is leading the probe, has already concluded that Romania, which rights groups have labeled a likely site for a secret center, has not hosted a large jail, but didn’t exclude the possibility of small facilities with one or two detainees being kept temporarily for interrogation.

According to Le Monde, detainees at Camp Bondsteel had no access to a lawyer and did not fall under any legal jurisdiction. "Among the detainees there were bearded men. Some were reading the Koran," Gil-Robles told the paper. He asked for the facility to be dismantled, and received assurances the following year that this had been done.