Former CIA Director Gen. Michael Hayden on Thursday defended revelations from Senate Intelligence Committee Democrats that the agency used rectal rehydration on detainees.

“These were medical procedures,” Hayden said during a tense interview on CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper.” He added that the method was used because detainees were dehydrated, and that giving them intravenous fluids with needles would be dangerous.

“I’m not a doctor,” he said. “What I am told is that this is one of the ways that the body is rehydrated.”

The Intelligence Committee report, released Tuesday, detailed a slew of abuses by CIA interrogators on prisoners, including one that involved detainees’ food being blended and “rectally infused.” The report says the practice was used on at least five detainees, including two of the most infamous, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah.

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