PRISON IN GUANTANAMO BAY
About 600 people were secretly picked up by the US forces from all over the world and put in a prison in Guantanamo Bay, an area near Cuba controlled by American Navy. The American government said that they were enemies of the US and linked to the attack on New York on 11 September 2001. In most cases the governments of their countries were not asked or even informed about their imprisonment. Families of prisoners, media or even UN representatives were not allowed to meet them. The US army arrested them, interrogated them and decided whether to keep them there or not. There was no trial before any magistrate in the US. Nor could these prisoners approach courts in their own country.
Amnesty Interenational, an interentaional human rights organisation, collected information on the condition of the prisoners in Guantanamo Bay and reported that the prisoners were being tortured in ways that violated the US laws. They were being denied the treatment that even prisoners of war must get as per international treaties. Many prisoners had tried protesting against these conditions by going on a hunger fast. Prisoners were not released even after they were officially declared not guilty. An independent inquiry by the UN supported these findings. The UN Secretary General said that the prison in Guantanamo Bay should be closed down. The US government refused to accept these pleas.
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