700 Days of the Gitmo Clock
Dear friends and supporters,
Regular readers will remember that, in May 2013, when a prison-wide hunger strike was raging at Guantánamo, President Obama delivered a major speech
on national security issues in which he promised to resume releasing prisoners from Guantánamo, after a period of over two and a half years in which just five men had been freed because of Congressional obstruction.
After President Obama's promise, we established the Gitmo Clock
to mark how many days it is since the promise, and how many men have been freed.
Today the Gitmo Clock marks 700 days since the promise
, and just 44 men have been freed
. This is progress, of course, given the inertia of 2010-13, but much more remains to be done, because, of the 122 men still held, 57 have been approved for release, including one man, Mashur al-Sabri, who was approved for release last week by a Periodic Review Board.
We hope that you will read our latest article, "As Gitmo Clock Marks 700 Days Since Obama's Promise to Resume Releasing Prisoners, 57th Man Is Approved For Release
," and also that you will visit, like, share and tweet the Gitmo Clock
, and we also ask you to contact the White House and the Pentagon, to ask them to release more prisoners as soon as possible.
- Call the White House and ask President Obama to release all the men cleared for release. Call 202-456-1111 or 202-456-1414 or submit a comment online
- Call the Department of Defense and ask Defense Secretary Ashton Carter to issue certifications for other cleared prisoners, as required by law: 703-571-3343.
We also note that, today, the Washington Post
has published an article suggesting that up to ten men will be freed from Guantánamo in the next few months, including Ahmed Ould Abdel Aziz, a Mauritanian who we wrote about here
, Younus Chekhouri, a Moroccan who we wrote about here
, six Yemenis (to be resettled in third counties), and Shaker Aamer, the last British resident in the prison, who is, reportedly, to be returned to the UK.
Shaker, of course, is someone whose story we have covered in depth, and, since November, we have been doing what we can
to promote We Stand With Shaker
, the new campaign to secure his release that "Close Guantánamo" co-founder Andy Worthington established with Joanne MacInnes.
We very much hope, of course, that the Post
's story turns out to be true, and that, when the Gitmo Clock reaches the two-year mark on May 23, we will, at the very least, be on the verge of the planned releases mentioned in the Post
Good news remains a rare commodity when it comes to dealing with Guantánamo, and some good news is needed now, over three months since the last men were freed.
With thanks, as ever, for your support.
The "Close Guantánamo" team
P.S. Please, if you will, also ask your friends and family to join us
-- just an email address is required to be counted amongst those opposed to the ongoing existence of Guantánamo, and to receive updates of our activities by email. Please also note that we can be found on Twitter here
and on Facebook here