The undersigned human rights, civil liberties and faith organizations appreciate the recent efforts that your administration has made to improve transparency and protection of civilians in U.S. operations involving the use of force, including drone strikes. While, as we reiterate, much remains to be done, your issuance on July 1, 2016 of Executive Order 13732, “United States Policy on Pre- and Post-Strike Measures to Address Civilian Casualties in U.S. Operations Involving the Use of Force”, is a positive step towards more transparent and accountable U.S. policy and practice on the use of force.
We write to request that, as part of a robust effort to implement the Executive Order this fall, your administration investigate ten past drone strikes as well as other strikes where there are credible allegations of harm to civilians. In May 2015, we wrote to you, highlighting these ten cases that the United Nations, local and international human rights organizations, or journalists had investigated and in which they found credible evidence of harm to civilians and, in some cases, potentially unlawful killings, resulting from U.S. strikes carried out in secret. (…)’
Authors: American Civil Liberties Union; Amnesty International; Center for Civilians in Conflict (CIVIC); Center for Constitutional Rights; European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights; Friends Committee on National Legislation; Human Rights Clinic (Columbia Law School); Human Rights First; Human Rights Watch; National Religious Campaign Against Torture; Open Society Foundations and Reprieve