Guantanamo lawyers

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.

After Years in Secret Prisons, UAE Threatens Unsafe Repatriations to Yemen for Former Guantánamo Prisoners

24.10.20

Sad news via the United Nations and the Associated Press, updating the story of 18 Yemenis sent to the United Arab Emirates between 2015 and 2017, after being unanimously approved for release from Guantánamo by high-level US government review processes. Promised new lives, they — and a handful of other ex-prisoners, including some Afghans and Guantánamo’s last Russian prisoner — found themselves imprisoned in abusive conditions instead, and, adding insult to injury, the Yemenis are now being threatened with repatriation to Yemen, where their lives are at risk.

Asadullah Haroon Gul: The Hunger Striking Afghan Forgotten at Guantánamo

20.10.20

An update in the story of Asadullah Haroon Gul, a genuinely insignificant prisoner, and one of the last two Afghans at Guantánamo, who has been on a hunger strike for five months, and weighs just 110 pounds. AFP recently visited his family in the refugee camp where they live, in north western Pakistan.

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!

Mohammed Al-Qahtani: Will Severe Mental Illness Secure His Release from Guantánamo?

5.10.20

An update in the case of Guantánamo prisoner Mohammed al-Qahtani, who, notoriously, was subjected to torture at the prison in 2002 in relation to claims that he was the intended 20th hijacker for the 9/11 attacks. Al-Qahtani has long-standing severe mental health issues, exacerbated by his torture, and earlier this year the District Court ordered a mixed medical commission for him, to assess whether or not he should be returned to Saudi Arabia to receive appropriate treatment. The government appealed for a stay, but the good news is that now the appeals court, the D.C. Circuit Court, has refused to go along with the government’s wishes.

Trump-Appointed Appeals Court Judge Rules That Guantánamo Prisoners Don’t Have Due Process Rights

2.9.20

The significance of an appeals court ruling, written by Trump appointee Neomi Rao, claiming that the Guantánamo prisoners do not have due process rights, contrary to Boumediene v. Bush, the 2008 Supreme Court ruling affirming their habeas corpus rights, and a ruling last year, Qassim v. Trump, establishing their due process rights, in direction contravention of this latest ruling.

Inter-American Commission on Human Rights’ Ground-Breaking Decision in the Case of Former Guantánamo Prisoner Djamel Ameziane

18.6.20

Some rare good news on the Guantánamo front, as the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), whose mission is “to promote and protect human rights in the American hemisphere,” and whose resolutions are supposed to be binding on the US, which is a member state, has determined that the US was responsible for the “torture, abuse, and decade-long confinement without charge” of Djamel Ameziane, held for nearly 12 years at Guantánamo, from 2002-13, and has recommended that the US should provide “adequate material and moral reparations” for the human rights violations that he suffered.

Lockdown Listening: Radiolab’s Six-Part, Four-Hour Series About Guantánamo Prisoner Abdul Latif Nasser, Cleared for Release But Still Held

8.5.20

For these lockdown days, have a listen to the six-part, four-hour Radiolab series from New York’s WNYC Studios, ‘The Other Latif’, a detailed exploration of the story of Guantánamo prisoner Abdul Latif Nasser, approved for release but still held, by his namesake, Radiolab’s Latif Nasser.

A Coronavirus Lament by Guantánamo Prisoner Asadullah Haroon Gul

5.4.20

Following the news that a sailor stationed at Guantánamo has been diagnosed with the coronavirus, and is in isolation, here’s a cross-post, with my own introduction, of reflections on the news by Asadullah Haroon Gul, an Afghan “forever prisoner,” who is still held despite there being no compelling reason for his ongoing imprisonment, and who fears for the health of more vulnerable prisoners, like Saifullah Paracha, Guantánamo’s oldest prisoner, who has had a number of heart attacks.

The Coronavirus and Guantánamo’s Extraordinarily Vulnerable Prison Population

1.4.20

As the coronavirus spreads around the globe with alarming speed, there are fears for the prisoners held at Guantánamo, especially after a US sailor tested positive for the virus last week. Along with my own thoughts, I cross-post an article published on Just Security by Scott Roehm, the Washington Director of the Center for Victims of Torture, pointing out that a number of the prisoners have serious underlying health problems, and calling for a number of appropriate responses from the Trump administration, beginning with letting the prisoners and their lawyers know what policies are in place to deal with the virus, and also including a call for Congress to allow prisoners to be transferred to the US mainland if they need urgent medical care.

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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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