Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Today on Holden's Obsession with the Gaggle

Little Scottie: Straight Shooter.

Q Can I ask you -- I'm sorry -- my real question is, the International Red Cross says it fears the United States is holding terrorist suspects at secret locations around the world. Do you know anything about that?

MR. McCLELLAN: I saw that report, or some of the comments from the Red Cross. Here's what I can tell you, I mean, we work closely with the Red Cross on these issues and we are always in regular and constant contact with the Red Cross. The Red Cross raises issues from time to time and we always work to respond directly to the Red Cross on the issues that they raise. And we try to do so -- and do so as promptly as we can.

Q Is there any merit to this concern? And are you doing anything about it?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, you know, if they have issues that they want to bring to our attention, we always work with them to respond directly to them on those issues.

Q They haven't brought this up to you yet, that you know of?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I'm looking further into this, but, again, I just want to remind you that we do work closely with the Red Cross on all detainee issues and that they do bring up issues from time to time and we always work to respond directly to the Red Cross.

Um, Scott. You may want to check on that conflagration raging in your dockers.

U.S. officials are detaining terror suspect at undisclosed locations around the world, avoiding access to the International Committee of the Red Cross, a spokeswoman for the Geneva-based aid organization said.

The Red Cross hasn't had access to a ``certain number'' of detainees identified as arrested on the Web site of the Federal Bureau of Investigation or in media reports, said Antonella Notari, a Red Cross spokeswoman, declining to provide an estimate.


The U.S. government hasn't officially responded to the Red Cross demand to be notified about all detainees, including those at undisclosed locations.

``We're still waiting for a U.S. reply,'' Notari said. That request was made Red Cross President Jakob Kellenberger in January.