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Former President Clinton Speaks Out Against White House Terror Legislation


Former U.S. President Bill Clinton has voiced his opposition to anti-terrorism legislation backed by the White House, saying it would be wrong to approve torture for terrorism suspects.

Mr. Clinton's comments were broadcast on U.S. radio Thursday, from an interview taped a day earlier. He was referring to President Bush's proposal before the Senate to narrowly define international standards of treatment for prisoners. The plan would allow intelligence agents to use more aggressive interrogation methods for terror suspects.

Mr. Clinton said such legislation could institutionalize prisoner abuse. He warned that information obtained under such pressure could be unreliable, and he noted that other countries could then justify similar treatment for U.S. troops.

Both the House of Representatives and the Senate are considering President Bush's legislation.

A House panel on Wednesday reversed itself and endorsed the plan. But the Senate Armed Services Committee has rejected Mr. Bush's proposal in favor of one that gives prisoners more legal rights.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.

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