Hunger Strike at the Guantanamo Prison

on Sunday, August 25, 2013

The suffering of the prisoners at the Guantanamo prison seems never ending. It has been exactly 200 days, since they started their hunger strike, but this step seems to have reaped no benefits. The conditions are still the same and their future is still pretty dark.

According to the reports of the prison authorities, out of several detainees, 37 of them are still carrying on with their hunger strike; they have had no food for nearly seven months.  While, 33 of the detainees are force fed.

However, Carlos Warner, who is a famous lawyer for several of the detainees, says that the reports of the prison authorities cannot be relied upon.  He says that the hunger strike is much grander in both, duration as well as in size.

Carlos Warner further elaborates that his clients have reported to him that their hunger strikes have been a vain attempt, as the conditions in the camp are as poor, as they always were. The detainees are suffering, being fed through tubes, forcefully, constantly being violated and there is absolutely no communication with the military.

The hunger strike was basically initiated, in February, to put an end to the meddling of the guards into the lives of several of the inmates. Their personal belongings are also mishandled. The inmates went on a hunger strike, avoiding food of all kinds, but to avoid ‘lethal cases’, the prison authorities started to force feed them, which has been labeled as ‘torture’ by the UN Human Rights Commission.

Other than force feeding, the prisoners have to face a lot of sexual harassment, as well. A Yemeni detainee named Bisheer al Marwalah says that the prisoners no longer have any respect or dignity left. The only thing that they are left with is despair.

In 2008, when Barack Obama’s election campaign was in full swing, he promised that Guantanamo would be one of the first things which he would be shutting down, but till now, no such thing has happened and the facility remains active. Obama blames the Congress’ interruption as a prime factor due to which he has not been able to shut Guantanamo down; however, most critics believe that Obama lacks the political and initiative to do so.

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