By Tom Carter:
Amnesty International report: conditions for Guantánamo prisoners worsening
7 April 2007
A report released Thursday by Amnesty International (AI) describes “deteriorating” conditions at the infamous Guantánamo Bay, Cuba prison camp, citing an increase in the use of physical isolation to break prisoners, and an accompanying rise in mental health problems.
The human rights group’s report calls for the immediate closure of the camp and affirms the right of victims to pursue reparations in US courts.
The report, “Cruel and Inhuman: Conditions of isolation for detainees at Guantánamo Bay,” dismisses assurances from US authorities that Guantánamo detainees are being treated “humanely” and afforded “high quality” medical care.
The report draws a parallel between the inhuman conditions at Guantánamo and the conditions at “super-maximum” prisons operated inside the United States.
According to AI, the Guantánamo prison currently houses 385 men from around 30 countries. These prisoners, many of whom have been incarcerated for more than five years, are being denied all rights associated with US and international law.
None have had their cases reviewed by any legitimate court, and are being held in violation of fundamental democratic principles.
In December 2006, according to the report, a facility dubbed “Camp 6” was opened in Guantánamo.
Camp 6, which now houses about 165 individuals, “created even harsher and apparently more permanent conditions of extreme isolation and sensory deprivation in which detainees are confined to almost completely sealed, individual cells, with minimal contact with any other human being.”
And Guantánamo is just the tip of the iceberg.