The CIA’s targeted killing program

As a month of anti-drone protests begins in the United States, some advocates are calling for the controversial targeted killing program to be shifted from the Central Intelligence Agency to the Defence Department. The program targets suspected members of terrorist groups in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.

Human Rights Watch is among the groups advocating for this transfer. “Our first and primary concern right now is the lack of transparency,” says Andrea Prasow, HRW’s senior counterterrorism counsel for the U.S. She says the Defence Department tends to be more transparent and accountable than the CIA, and must report its actions to Congress.

The Obama administration is widely reported to be seriously considering such a transfer. Prasow is cautiously optimistic. “I think the reason the administration is considering that move is because they recognize that the lack of transparency has become a problem. At least I hope that’s why.”

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