US prisons

Video: Aafia Siddiqui and America’s Disappeared – Andy Worthington Speaks at a Protest at the US Embassy in London

18.4.12

On Saturday March 31, I was delighted to be asked to speak at a demonstration outside the US Embassy marking the 9th anniversary of the disappearance of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist who vanished with her three children in Karachi on March 30, 2003. It took nearly five and a half years until she […]

Tarek Mehanna’s Powerful Statement As He Received a 17-Year Sentence Despite Having Harmed No One

14.4.12

What a disgrace. On Thursday, Tarek Mehanna, a 29-year old pharmacist from Sudbury, Massachusetts, was sentenced to 17 and half years in prison, after being found guilty in December on seven charges, including “providing material support to terrorists,” conspiracy to kill in a foreign country and lying to law enforcement officers. Perhaps that sounds appropriate, […]

Solitary Confinement as Torture: Some US Prisons Recognize the Problem, as California Inmates Ask the UN to Act

9.4.12

Last July, when prisoners held in long-term solitary confinement in Security Housing Units (SHUs) in Pelican Bay State Prison in California embarked on a hunger strike to protest about the conditions in which they are held, I was pleased to find the time to wrote about it (which I did here, here and here — […]

Rallies Worldwide to Mark the 9th Anniversary of the Disappearance of Aafia Siddiqui

29.3.12

On Saturday, outside the US Embassy in Grosvenor Square, London, I will be speaking at an event marking the ninth anniversary of the disappearance in Pakistan of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui, who vanished for five years and five months, and then mysteriously reappeared in Afghanistan in August 2008, where she was arrested, and then allegedly tried […]

UN Torture Rapporteur Accuses US Government of Cruel and Inhuman Treatment of Bradley Manning

13.3.12

Last week, at a meeting of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, Professor Juan Méndez, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, spoke about the case of Pfc. Bradley Manning, the alleged WikiLeaks whistleblower, telling the news agency AFP, “I believe Bradley Manning was subjected to […]

Beyond Guantánamo, New York Times Examines How Federal Prisons Deal with Terrorists

14.12.11

As the debate over the dreadful detainee provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act has demonstrated, when lawmakers, unprovoked, have unilaterally decided that what America needs is mandatory military custody for terror suspects (with the intention of holding people for life without charge or trial), something has gone horribly wrong, and a rational perspective on […]

Sign the Petition to the British Government: Prevent Babar Ahmad’s Extradition to the US, Put Him on Trial in the UK

28.10.11

Please sign the petition! 100,000 signatures needed (current total: 52,000). Today has been designated National Babar Ahmad Day by his supporters. UPDATE November 2: Congratulations, everyone! 100,863 signatures! Well done to all those involved in this extraordinary campaign! On August 11, the family of Babar Ahmad launched an e-petition, calling on the UK government to put […]

UN Torture Expert Calls for an End to Solitary Confinement, Discusses Bradley Manning

23.10.11

On Tuesday, Professor Juan Méndez, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, “called on all countries to ban the solitary confinement of prisoners except in very exceptional circumstances and for as short a time as possible, with an absolute prohibition in the case of juveniles and people […]

As Pelican Bay Hunger Strikers Risk Death, Psychologist Testifies that Solitary Confinement is Torture

12.10.11

On Day 17 of the renewed hunger strike by prisoners in Pelican Bay State Prison, and other prisons in California, prisoners, their relatives and their supporters fear that there will soon be deaths amongst the hunger strikers, because, as SF Bay View reported yesterday, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) “has been treating […]

Pelican Bay and American Torture: Prisoners in Long-Term Isolation Continue Hunger Strike Despite Authorities’ Brutal Response

11.10.11

When it comes to America’s domestic prison system, no one in a position of authority wants to use the word “torture,” but I defy anyone whose heart is not made of stone to argue that total solitary confinement — for years and even decades — with no contact allowed with other human beings, and in […]

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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, co-director, We Stand With Shaker. Also, singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers) and photographer.
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