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Guantanamo detainees in protest fast
by ALJ
Wednesday Aug 31st, 2005 7:39 PM
Dozens of Guantanamo Bay detainees have started a new hunger strike at the US detention centre and at least one has written a will in anticipation of starving to death, human rights lawyers say.

The New York-based Centre for Constitutional Rights said the hunger strike began because the US Department of Defence reneged on promises to negotiate with prisoners after a June-July hunger strike that involved up to 200 of the 500-plus men detained at the remote base.

The military said only 52 prisoners were involved in the first strike, after a released prisoner and lawyers who spoke to detained clients published the news.

"The DOD is practising dangerous deception," an attorney with the centre, Gitanjali Gutierrez, said in a statement.

"It hid evidence of the hunger strike and prisoner abuse from visiting senators and the public."

Spokesmen for the detention mission at Guantanamo could not immediately be reached for comment.

Legal blackhole

Detainees want to be charged and brought to trial, or freed. Many have been held for more than three and a half years without charge or access to lawyers. Most were captured in the Afghanistan war, suspected of ties to al-Qaida or the ousted Taliban regime that sheltered the terrorist network.

Defence officials promised to negotiate with prisoners when "the strike became so widespread that medics could not manage the need and elected to stop making their regular medical calls", and strikers spent 26 days without food, the statement from the New York-based centre said.

It quoted imprisoned British resident Shaker Aamer as telling a lawyer that when some of the men refused even water, "the conditions of some prisoners became so critical that the detainee hospital had no more beds and they had to take prisoners into the Navy hospital".

Desperate detainees

Mahdis Keshavarz, a spokesman for the centre, said she believed some 200 detainees were currently refusing all meals.

"Prisoners are now prepared to die in an effort to receive a fair hearing and humane treatment," Gutierrez said. "These men deserve their day in court."

Lawyers said they did know when exactly the new strike started. The lawyers said that as soon as the first strike ended, on 28 July, mistreatment of prisoners resumed and several prisoners allegedly were beaten by military personnel early in August.

A Kuwaiti prisoner was "violently assaulted" by the military's Extreme Reaction Force and subjected to psychological abuse, the statement said.

http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/12BA90A4-696D-4287-9AE0-97412EE64DCF.htm
by more
Thursday Sep 1st, 2005 8:28 PM
The US military says only 76 detainees are refusing food at the prison for terror suspects in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The military claim disputed allegations that nearly half the 500-plus prisoners are on hunger strike in Guanatamo. A military spokesman also denied charges that it has been beating up and otherwise abusing prisoners.

Some detainees have been fasting since 8 August and nine have been hospitalised but are in stable condition, Army Colonel Brad Blackner, said.

"We continue to monitor them 24 hours a day. We continue to offer them water and food," Blackner said on Thursday. "The number (of prisoners on hunger strike) is nowhere near 200."

Most of some 500 detainees from more than 40 countries have been held more than three and a half years without charge or access to lawyers. One of the demands of the strikers is that they be charged and brought to trial, or freed.

Most were captured in the Afghanistan war, suspected of ties to al-Qaida or the ousted Taliban regime.

Desperate inmates

The military's account conflicted with Wednesday's report from the New York-based Centre Constitutional Rights that 210 prisoners were refusing food and that some are threatening to starve to death unless they are put on trial or released. The centre said one detainee even wrote a will before starting the hunger strike.

The detainees are angry because the US military allegedly reneged on promises to bring the prison into compliance with Geneva Conventions if detainees ended a June-July hunger strike that involved up to 200 of the 500-plus men from some 40 countries held at the base, the centre said.

After news of that hunger strike came from a freed detainee, the military said only 52 prisoners were not eating.

Blackner also denied the centre's claim that at least three detainees were abused by the military's Extreme Reaction Force.

"If the events ... actually happened I would know about it and I haven't heard anything about 'beating' or 'abusing' or throwing of a refrigerator," Blackner said.

Lawyers accuse the military of lying about the detainees.

The strike is the result of prisoners "who have grown desperate after more than three years of constant deceit. The military has lied to the prisoners over, and over, and over again," said Clive Stafford Smith, a British lawyer representing several detainees.

In another statement on Thursday, the Centre for Constitutional Rights said the Department of Defence "has continued to resist the efforts of counsel to meet promptly with their clients participating in the hunger strike".

http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/DAF1D973-E562-419A-B093-60BF860E156C.htm
by Let them eat cake
Thursday Sep 1st, 2005 8:45 PM
Put food in front of them that's not halal. Make certain it's fresh and appetizing. Hunger strike will be over, and Allah will be pissed before you know it.
by Racist ignorance
Thursday Sep 1st, 2005 9:57 PM
It comes shining through in all it's glory (or should I say anti-Muslim ignorance/fear/hate)
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