George W. Bush Cancels Swiss Visit over Torture Prosecution Threat
George W. Bush has cancelled a planned trip to Switzerland over fears he could be arrested and prosecuted for torture. Reuters reports that the former US president was due to be the keynote speaker at an annual Jewish charity gala, but due to criminal complaints against him for torture, he scrapped his planned February 12 visit.
The organizers of the event cited security concerns posed by leftist protests as the reason for Bush’s cancellation, but leftist groups protest all the time without causing events to be called off. The true reason for the cancellation isn’t hard to work out.
“President Bush has admitted he ordered waterboarding, which everyone considers to be a form of torture under international law,” Human Rights Watch attorney Reed Brody told Reuters. “Under the Convention against Torture, authorities would have been obliged to open an investigation and either prosecute or extradite George Bush,” he added.
Even right-wing politicians in Switzerland want to see Bush in the dock at the Hague. Dominique Baettig, a Swiss parliamentarian from the reactionary People’s Party, has called for Bush’s arrest for war crimes if he ever sets foot in the country.
“I think George Bush’s world is a very small place at the moment,” Brody told Reuters. “He may enjoy some kind of impunity in the United States, but other countries will not treat him so indulgently.”
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