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Mukasey asked to clarify torture remarks

Dec. 4, 2008 at 9:05 PM

WASHINGTON, Dec. 4 (UPI) -- A top Democrat in Congress wants U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey to clarify a statement on officials who signed off on torture and surveillance policies.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., asked Mukasey in a letter Thursday for the basis of a statement he made that the officials believed they were acting within the law.

The letter was also signed by Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., who chairs the Judiciary subcommittee on the Constitution, civil rights and civil liberties, The Hill reported Thursday.

Mukasey said Wednesday there is "absolutely no evidence that anybody who rendered a legal opinion either with respect to surveillance or with respect to interrogation policy did so for any reason other than to protect the security of the country and in the belief that he or she was doing something lawful."

Conyers and Nadler said they were "troubled" by the statement, The Hill reported.

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