Conditions at Guantanamo

Mansoor Adayfi’s “Don’t Forget Us Here”: A Devastating Account of Guantánamo’s Cruelty, But One Suffused with Hope, Humor and Humanity

18.8.21

My review of “Don’t Forget Us Here: Lost and Found at Guantánamo,” former prisoner Mansoor Adayfi’s riveting account of his 14 years in the prison, much of which was spent in fierce resistance to the injustice and brutality of everyday life in this fundamentally lawless facility. While the subject matter is bleak, Mansoor somehow never loses touch with his hope, his sense of humor and his humanity.

On UN Torture Day, Please Remember the 40 Torture Victims Still Held at Guantánamo

26.6.21

On the UN International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, marking the day, in 1987, when the UN Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment came into effect, I ask you to remember the 40 torture victims still held at Guantánamo. 24 of them were specifically held and tortured in CIA “black sites,” but all 40 have, at Guantánamo, been held in what, in January, the UN described as “a place of arbitrariness and abuse, a site where torture and ill-treatment was rampant and remains institutionalized, where the rule of law is effectively suspended, and where justice is denied.”

US Military Closes Camp 7, Guantánamo’s “High-Value Detainee” Prison Block, Moves Men to Camp 5

5.4.21

Here’s my report on the US military’s announcement that it has closed the secretive Camp 7 at Guantánamo, where the so-called “high-value detainees” were held, and has moved them to Camp 5 instead. Camp 7 had been falling apart for years, but moving these men is no solution to Guantánamo’s larger problems: that the men held there should either be tried via a functional judicial system, or released.

111 Organizations, Including Close Guantánamo, Sign A Letter to President Biden Urging Him to Close the Prison and End Indefinite Detention

4.2.21

A letter to President Biden, urging him to close Guantánamo, and to end indefinite detention without charge or trial, signed by 111 organizations, including Close Guantanamo, which I co-founded nine years ago with the US attorney Tom Wilner.

Seven Authors, All Former Guantánamo Prisoners, Urge President Biden to Close the Prison Before its 20th Anniversary

2.2.21

A cross-post, with my own introduction, of an open letter to President Biden, urging him to close Guantánamo, which was written by seven former prisoners who are also authors: Mansoor Adayfi, Moazzam Begg, Lakhdar Boumediene, Sami Al Hajj, Ahmed Errachidi, Mohamedou Ould Slahi and Moussa Zemmouri.

Video: Guantánamo Attorney Shelby Sullivan-Bennis and I Discuss the Prison’s Ongoing Horrors for Revolution Books Online

18.1.21

The video of an online event about Guantánamo at Revolution Books in New York on Jan. 17, in which I appeared with attorney Shelby Sullivan-Bennis. It may have been online, rather than in the bookstore as in previous years, but it was, nevertheless, a powerful and emotional occasion.

Joe Biden’s Guantánamo: New York Times Highlights Decaying Prison Cells and Broken Judicial System; Observer Notes Return of Hope

29.12.20

My assessment of two recent articles, in the New York Times and the Observer, about Joe Biden and Guantánamo, and what we might expect from the new administration regarding the decrepit state of Camp 7, reserved for the “high-value detainees”, the broken nature of the military commissions, and the need for action on releasing six men already approved for release, and the inappropriate imprisonment, without charge or trial, and with no end in sight, of numerous “low-value detainees.”

As You Read This, Guantánamo Prisoner Ahmed Rabbani Has Been On A Hunger Strike for 2,846 Days

17.11.20

Reprieve has just launched a website counting, in real time, how long their client Ahmed Rabbani has been on a hunger strike — 2,846 days, as of Nov. 17, 2020. This is a shocking amount of time, as is Ahmed’s skeletal state — he weighs just 39 kilos, or 6 stone 2 pounds. I argue that it is time for Ahmed, like other “forever prisoners,” who genuinely don’t pose a threat to the US, to be released.

Guantánamo Voices: An Amazing Comic Book Version of the Guantánamo Story

13.10.20

Promoting “Guantánamo Voices: True Accounts from the World’s Most Infamous Prison,” a powerful new book, written by multi-media journalist Sarah Mirk, and illustrated by a number of talented graphic artists, drawing on interviews with nine people who know the prison well, including former prisoners and lawyers. A perfect gift for enlightened friends, friends who need enlightening, birthdays and Christmas!

Judge Upholds Ruling Ordering Independent Medical Review for Tortured Guantánamo Prisoner Mohammed Al-Qahtani

20.8.20

Good news as a US judge upholds a ruling from March requiring the US government to allow a US doctor and two foreign doctors to assess the mental health of Mohammed al-Qahtani, a Saudi national who was subjected to a vile torture program at Guantánamo when he was suspected of being the intended 20th hijacker for the 9/11 attacks, even though the US authorities knew that he had serious pre-existing mental health issues.

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Andy Worthington

Investigative journalist, author, campaigner, commentator and public speaker. Recognized as an authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror.” Co-founder, Close Guantánamo and We Stand With Shaker. Also, photo-journalist (The State of London), and singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers).
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