Former military officials, prisoners and activists gathered in front of the White House today to protest the ongoing detention of prisoners at Guantanamo. They also drew attention to the force-feeding of 30 detainees on hunger strike at the facility, a practice that human rights groups consider torture. FSRN’s Noelle Galos reports.
Surrounded by supporters wearing orange jumpsuits, human rights activist Andrés Thomas Conteris underwent a voluntary force feeding Friday in front of the White House. He has been fasting for 61 days in solidarity with prisoners in Guantánamo and Pelican Bay Prison in California. Pelican Bay hunger strikers ended their protest on Thursday. Today’s action aimed to raise awareness about the indefinite detention of Guantanamo detainees. Protesters demand the prison’s closure. Eric Montalvo is the attorney of former Guantanamo detainee Mohammad Jawad:
“I’m not here to say they are innocent or guilty, but they deserve a trial. And when you start trying to do a trial 10 years after the fact, that undermines the entire justice system and the rule of law, which is what it’s all about.”
Last week, the Obama administration transferred two detainees to their home country of Algeria, the first release from Guantanamo in more than a year. One-hundred sixty-four detainees remain, 84 of whom are already cleared for release. Noelle Galos, FSRN, Washington, DC.
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