Fifth Anniversary Comes and Goes For Guantanamo

“Demonstrators — some wearing Guantanamo-style orange jumpsuits — staged protests from Melbourne to London and Washington on Thursday against the U.S. military prison in Cuba where terrorism suspects have been held for years without trial.”

January 11 marks five years since detainees were first “shackled, blindfolded” and flown to the camp in Cuba. In total, 770 people have been imprisoned there. Of them, only 10 have been charged with crimes.

“The idea that you can indefinitely detain people, give them no access to their families or initially lawyers, never charge them and torture them in an offshore penal colony, should be absolute anathema to any civilized country in the world,” Michael Ratner of the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights told the LA Times.

Anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, whose son died while serving in Iraq, led protesters in a march to the gates of the Guantanamo facility, shouting “Gitmo prison is a source of shame; no more torture in our name!”

Newly appointed UN Secretary Ban Ki-Moon has also called for action to be taken, saying: “like my predecessor (Kofi Annan), I believe the prison should be closed.”

January 12, 2007
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