Please also read about the latest decisions taken by the Periodic Review Boards, the rumors that President Obama is considering passing an executive order to secure the closure of Guantánamo, how the release of prisoners from Guantánamo has, alarmingly, ground to a halt once more, and about the 9/11 anniversary, the situation at Guantánamo at the start of September, as covered in the New York Times, the profound legal challenges to the military commissions, and the mixed news from the review boards at Guantánamo in July, regarding the last two Kuwaiti prisoners, one of whom was released in November 2014.
Please also read our latest articles about the systemic problems that continue to plague the military commissions at Guantánamo, and our previous article about the Periodic Review Boards at Guantánamo, for a Saudi prisoner who wants to go home. Also read "Close Guantánamo" co-founders Andy Worthington and Tom Wilner on the release of five Taliban prisoners in exchange for Bowe Bergdahl, and why the widespread criticism in the media and Congress was unfounded and opportunistic. Please also read this op-ed by Frank Goldsmith, the lawyer for one of the five released Taliban prisoners.
Also find out about how a U.S. judge has ordered the government to stop force-feeding a prisoner, and to preserve video evidence of its actions, and also about a Yemeni prisoner cleared for release by a review board, who, nevertheless, may never be released, like 57 other Yemenis cleared for release but still held.
Also read the latest legal challenge by Shaker Aamer, the last British resident in Guantánamo, who has serious mental and physical health issues, and has asked a judge to order his release, and other articles about a long-term hunger striker's historic legal challenge to his force-feeding, and about the new Guantánamo prisoner list.
Please also read the letter from prominent supporters of President Obama calling for him to close Guantánamo as promised, and also a love letter from the prison by the Moroccan prisoner Younis Chekhouri, and read about the first anniversary of last year's hunger strike and the 12th anniversary of President Bush's memo declaring that the Geneva Conventions didn't apply at Guantánamo. You can also watch the video and read about the protest in Washington D.C. on Jan. 11, the 12th anniversary of the opening of Guantánamo, and read our latest articles about the GTMO Clock, and about the new Periodic Review Boards.
Please also read other articles -- about Congress voting for legislation making it easier for President Obama to release prisoners, our article after the Senate first passed proposals to help to make the closure of Guantánamo a reality, our two recent articles about the Algerian prisoners repatriated against their will, and our article about the repatriation of two Saudis.
Also feel free to read our articles about what the end of the Afghan war will mean for Guantánamo, and about developments including the start of periodic reviews for 71 prisoners who were not cleared for release. Please also read about how Shaker Aamer, the last British resident in the prison, was trying to get an independent doctor to visit him at Guantánamo (a mission that, for a change, was successful), and a declaration by Ramzi Kassem, one of his lawyers.
We also recommend other op-eds by Tom Wilner and Andy Worthington about how President Obama has the power to close Guantánamo now, and how continued inaction is a disgrace, and our September article about the first release of prisoners since President Obama's promise to do so in May, which was, in turn, prompted by widespread outrage at the prison-wide hunger strike that began in February 2013.
Also, please look at our updated prisoner list, identifying the 148 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 79 prisoners cleared for release, who are held because it is politically inconvenient to release them, is a disgrace. 75 of these men have long been cleared for release by a presidential task force, and four others were added to the list of cleared prisoners this year, after a review process known as a Detainee Review Board.
Please read our latest exclusive report about the cleared prisoners still in Guantánamo, our latest world exclusive from Shaker Aamer, the last British resident in the prison, our first report about the hunger strike, and our follow-ups here and also here and here and here, on a violent raid by the guard force. Please also read about Sen. Feinstein's call to free the cleared prisoners, including the Yemenis, Tom Wilner's op-ed in the Washington Post, and Sen. Carl Levin's call for renewed action to close Guantánamo.
We also recommend the accounts from Guantánamo of the hunger strike by Ahmed Belbacha and Abu Wa'el Dhiab, two of the 75 long-cleared prisoners who are still held. And we are pleased to announce that Ahmed Belbacha was finally released in March 2014.
Also, please read our response to President Obama's major speech on national security issues on May 23, 2013, in which he finally made three significant promises regarding the prison -- a promise to appoint new envoys to deal with the release of prisoners, a promise to drop his ban on releasing cleared Yemenis, and a promise to resume the release of other cleared prisoners.
Please also read our response to the news last summer that the Periodic Review Boards were being set up, after a long delay, to examine whether 71 prisoners who had not been cleared for release should continue to be regarded as a threat. This, incidentally, is a process towards which we would like to contribute, as we are able to provide an objective analysis of the supposed evidence, exposing its many shortcomings.
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 148 men are still held, even though 79 of them have been cleared for release. In 2012, we published an exclusive report identifying 40 prisoners cleared for release up to eight years ago who are still held, and we also produced a major report telling the stories of 55 of the cleared prisoners whose names were included on a list released by the Justice Department in a court case in September 2012.
In September 2012, we also marked the ninth death at Guantánamo -- of Adnan Latif, a Yemeni who should have been freed in 2006, on the first of three occasions when he was cleared for release -- under George W. Bush, under Barack Obama, and in a U.S. court. In July 2013, we revisited Adnan's story for an exclusive article questioning the official report of his death, based on unclassified notes of a meeting at Guantánamo between Abdelhadi Faraj, a Syrian who knew Adnan, and his attorney Ramzi Kassem.
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 five 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. 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.