From British daily The Morning Star:
Guantanamo inmate ‘beaten with batons’
Wednesday 15 April 2009
A DETAINEE at the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay phoned a global TV network on Tuesday to say that he was severely beaten for refusing to leave his cell.
Chadian Mohammed el-Gharani told al-Jazeera that guards beat him with batons and sprayed him with tear gas.
The US has never allowed journalists to interview Guantanamo prisoners and al-Jazeera did not say how it had managed to speak to Mr Gharani.
US army spokesman Brook DeWalt suggested that Mr Gharani may have used one of his weekly phone calls to his family to speak to al-Jazeera.
Mr Gharani did not give the date of the alleged abuse but said it had occurred after the election of US President Barack Obama.
The prisoner says he refused to leave his cell because he was not being permitted to interact with other detainees and was denied “normal food.”
He said that a group of six soldiers in protective gear had forcibly removed him from the cell and beat him, breaking one of his front teeth.
A US judge ruled in January that Mr Gharani should be freed, dismissing the military’s allegations that he was part of al-Qaida and had worked for the Taliban in Afghanistan.
Mr Gharani is being held in a section of the camp where prisoners are permitted “privileges” while he awaits release.
See also here.
MILITARY lawyers have urged Washington to follow legally binding protocols it signed in 2002 on child soldiers and release three juveniles who are languishing in Guantanamo: here.
Guantanamo detainee claims more abuses
Posted in: Local News
Written By: Nasser Arrabyee
Article Date: Apr 19, 2009 – 5:50:33 AM
A Yemeni detainee in Guantanamo Bay said mistreatment against prisoners has worsened after the US President Barack Obama ordered the closure of the detention last January.
“Oppression has increased, torture has increased and insults have increased,” said Adnan Farhan Abdul Latif, a Yemeni national held since 2001.
“I have seen death so many times,” he wrote in a letter to his American lawyer dated to April, a copy of which was sent to Yemen Observer.
“Everything is over; life is going to hell in my situation. America! What has happened to you,” wondered Abdul Latif, who is one of about 94 Yemenis of the 250 prisoners remaining in the detention.
David Remes, Abdul Latif’s lawyer, told Yemen Observer over phone from Washington that he had seen evidence of the alleged abuses on his client during meetings at the Guantanamo Bay facility in Cuba. The last trip to Guantanamo made by Mr. Remes was last month.
“I’ve seen the marks on these men, I’ve taken inventories that show the scars, that show the open wounds, that show the rashes,” said Mr. Remes who is the director of the Appeal for Justice, a human rights and civil liberties litigation firm.
“We have met with our clients, we know the men and the experiences are uniform and universal,” said Remes who represents about sixteen Yemen detainees.
“Abdul Latif has a badly dislocated shoulder blade. I’ve seen the evidence of physical torture and I’ve also heard about the evidence of psychological torture.”
A big controversy has been going on over the Yemeni detainees, the largest group, since last January when US President Obama ordered on his second day in office the closure of the detention in one year. Two days after Obama’s order, the Yemeni President Saleh, expected that 94 Yemenis will return home within 90 days. Saleh said at the time a rehabilitation centre will be built for the returnees. Neither the men were not released nor was the centre built until now.
The American administration hinted many times it would like to hand the Yemenis to Saudi Arabia to be rehabilitated, because it does not trust the capability of the Yemeni government to control the men and prevent them from joining terrorist groups once again. Only 15 Yemenis were released home, while most of the 230 Saudi nationals were released.
Yemen alone can not build the rehabilitation centre which may cost about $US12 million.
“If the government has this money, it will use it in building schools for children rather than building this centre,” a senior official told Yemen Observer on condition of anonymity.
“We want our men to be released to Yemen not anywhere else, and the Americans should help us to rehabilitate and re-integrate them into society.”
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