PRIORITIZING RESPONSE AND RECOVERY FOR US PERSONS WRONGFULLY DETAINED ABROAD - Terrorist and other transnational criminal organizations are no longer the only culprits of hostage-taking. Americans are now just as likely to be wrongfully detained by foreign governments to gain political leverage. Detainees are often thrust into poor detention conditions, face sham trials threatening draconian sentences, and are subject to mental and physical torture. Victims’ families are forced to navigate an unpredictable and complex political situation that can take years of intensive daily efforts to resolve. Support for families to further their advocacy must be enhanced. Detentions with indications of being wrongful or unlawful must be elevated and resolved more immediately. Prevention and accountability strategies must be prioritized.
The Atlantic Council’s Strategic Litigation Project hosted a panel discussion about the US approach to prevention of and accountability for wrongful detentions, how strategies can be improved, and ways to better support the families of those detained. The conversation featured legal experts, elected officials, and family members of current and former hostages.
ORIGINAL AIRDATE: 02/15/23