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MacManus calls for the immediate closing of Guantanamo Bay Prison

14 January, 2022 - by Chris MacManus MEP

MacManus calls for the immediate closing of Guantanamo Bay Prison

Sinn Féin MEP Chris MacManus has said that the closing down of the prison in Guantanamo Bay must be completed immediately, after twenty years in existence. 

MacManus commented:

“I believe all countries must subscribe to international law in a sincere manner. The existence of prisons like Guantanamo Bay is completely incompatible with that principle. The prison is located on the island of Cuba, in an area controlled by the American military, to circumvent the reach of international law, where torture could be carried out at will. Such human rights violations committed would be illegal if they took place on American soil. People will remember some of the horrific photos leaked, that exposes how detainees were treated.”

The Midlands Northwest MEP said the time for taking responsibility is long overdue. ”Since the Obama administration, it is actually the United States foreign policy to close the facility. However, twenty years from when the first suspects arrived, it still remains in operation. This is partly because Trump reversed the executive order issued by Obama. Biden has now reinstated the executive order.”

“Currently, there are thirty-nine detainees, which includes eighteen men who have not been charged with any crime. However, nearly eight hundred people have passed through the prison. I can only echo the comments of United Nations experts who stated it is “a symbol of a systematic lack of accountability for state-sponsored torture, ill treatment, and impunity granted to those responsible”. 

MacManus concluded by appealing to the Biden administration to uphold Human Rights. “All people detained deserve the right to due process, protection from torture and full legal representation. The Universal Declaration on Human Rights is intended to be the baseline and once a country decides they are exempt, it puts the system and in turn everyone’s protection at risk.”

“I would therefore urge the Biden administration to complete the process of closing Guantanamo Bay prison.” ENDS

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