Please read our open letter to President Obama and defense secretary Ashton Carter, which we issued with 12 other organizations, calling for the release of the men still held in Guantánamo who have been approved for release but are still held -- 57 at the time, but now 52 after the release of six men to Oman on June 13, and after a long-term hunger striker (since 2005) was approved for release by a Periodic Review Board. And for the International Day in Support of the Victims of Torture, on June 26, please read the harrowing story of Tariq Ba Odah, a hunger striker since 2007, who is asking a U.S. judge to order his release because he is at risk of death.
Please also read "Close Guantánamo" co-founders Tom Wilner and Andy Worthington's op-ed for the Chicago Tribune, "Dispelling the myths of Guantánamo Bay," and Andy's article promoting it, which provides further information about the false recidivism claims relied upon by lawmakers like Sen. Tom Cotton. And also check out Andy's article about the latest proposals in Congress to keep Guantánamo open -- or to close it for good.
Please also read a new letter to President Obama from Senators Patrick Leahy, Dianne Feinstein and Dick Durbin -- included in our latest article -- calling for urgent action to release the 52 men still held who have been approved for release, a position strongly endorsed by the "Close Guantánamo" campaign.
To ask President Obama to continue releasing prisoners from Guantánamo, call the White House on 202-456-1111 or 202-456-1414 or submit a comment online.
Please also read about the "petty and nasty" decision by Guantánamo's commander to ban lawyers from bringing food to share with their clients, which was announced in May 2015. To call for the ban to be dropped, call U.S. Southern Command on 305-437-1244 and ask for prisoners -- "detainees," as the authorities describe them -- to continue to have food brought to them by their attorneys.
Please also visit the "GTMO Clock," which we launched in 2013 to count how many days it is since President Obama promised, in a major speech on May 23, 2013, to resume releasing prisoners from Guantánamo, and how many have been freed. The clock reached the 700-day mark on April 22, 2015, and for the second anniversary of the promise we issued an open letter to President Obama and Ashton Carter calling for renewed action.
Please also read Andy's latest articles about the Periodic Review Boards at Guantánamo, and his other recent article about efforts to secure the release of prisoners because of the end of the war in Afghanistan.
Please also read Andy's recent article, contrasting the powerful words written by a prisoner still held (Mohamedou Ould Slahi's "Guantánamo Diary") with the hysteria of lawmakers trying to keep the prison open forever, his article about the resumption of Periodic Review Boards at Guantánamo, and his article about the CIA torture report, why there must be prosecutions, and why it must not be forgotten that torture has permeated Guantánamo throughout its 13-year history, as well as other recent articles about forthcoming prisoner releases, Vice's major new feature on Guantánamo, and a letter to President Obama from 76 lawmakers asking to see videotapes of force-feeding at the prison.
Also, please look at our updated prisoner list, identifying the 116 men still held, and incorporating the decisions about whether they should be freed, tried or held indefinitely. These decisions were made by the Guantánamo Review Task Force in 2010, but were only made public in June 2013, as discussed in our article, "The Guantánamo Review Task Force's Decisions on Who to Release, Who to Try and Who to Hold Indefinitely Are Finally Released."
The prison at Guantánamo Bay is an abominable experiment in indefinite detention, which poisons America's claim to be a nation that believes in justice, and the detention of 52 prisoners cleared for release, who are held because it is politically inconvenient to release them, is a disgrace. 44 of these men have long been cleared for release by a presidential task force, and eight others were added to the list of cleared prisoners between January 2014 and June 2015, after undergoing a new review process, the Detainee Review Boards, which began in 2013.
We are a group of lawyers, journalists, retired military personnel and concerned citizens seeking to close the "war on terror" prison at Guantánamo Bay, where 116 men are still held, even though 52 of them have been cleared for release. In 2012, we published an exclusive report identifying 40 prisoners first cleared for release under President Bush, who were still held at the time, and we also produced a major report telling the stories of 56 of the cleared prisoners whose names were included on a list released by the Justice Department in a court case in September 2012.
As President Obama's second and final term in office becomes entrenched, his legacy is being written, and he needs to make good the promise to close Guantánamo that he made six years ago, on his second day in office in January 2009. While the prison remains open, it continues to undermine America's values and national security.
Join us now to help end this injustice and restore the rule of law. We call on President Obama to honor the principled and pragmatic commitment he made to close Guantánamo. Your voice matters.
Thank you for your commitment and support, and thank you for your interest in bringing this dark chapter in modern U.S. history to an end. Please see our mission statement for a more detailed analysis of why Guantánamo must be closed, and to see the list of prominent individuals and organizations who have signed it.