Ruling condemning Italy on snatch final

No appeals filed in case of Hassan Mustafa Omar Nasr

(ANSA) - Strasbourg, May 26 - A ruling with which the European Court of Human Rights condemned Italy earlier this year for preventing justice from being done in the 2003 extraordinary rendition of a Muslim cleric in Milan became final on Thursday.
    The decision is final after neither the Italian government nor cleric Hassan Mustafa Omar Nasr, known as Abu Omar, appealed and the three months to file an appeal against the February 23 ruling expired, as provided for by article 43 of the European Convention on Human Rights, the Court told ANSA.
    On February 23, the Strasbourg court said Italy abused State secrecy legislation to protect Italian defendants, including Italy's then top two intelligence officers, and also made a mistake in not initially requesting the extradition of 22 CIA agents and a US air Force colonel who were convicted.
    It also condemned pardons for the three top US defendants by Italian President Giorgio Napolitano and his successor Sergio Mattarella.
    The ECHR ruled that Italy had infringed the rights of the cleric, knowing that Abu Omar had been a victim of an extraordinary rendition operation that had started with his abduction in Italy and had continued with his transfer abroad.
    Noting that Italy cooperated in the operation to move the cleric to Egypt, where he was held for several months, the Court ruled that Italy was guilty of several human rights violations, including the failure to prevent Nasr from suffering torture and the infringement of his right to freedom and security.