Are Guantánamo's Periodic Review Boards working?
Dear friends and supporters,
Last week a Periodic Review Board at Guantánamo recommended that a Yemeni prisoner, Suhayl al-Sharabi, should continue to be held. The decision, as Close Guantánamo co-founder Andy Worthington explains in our latest article, Periodic Review Board Decides Yemeni at Guantánamo Still Poses A Threat 14 Years After Capture
, makes him the sixth man to have his ongoing imprisonment recommended, while 20 others have been recommended for release.
As Andy also explains, this 77% success rate for the prisoners remains significant, particularly as all but one of those approved for release had initially been described as "too dangerous to release" by the high-level, inter-agency Guantánamo Review Task Force that reviewed their cases back in 2009.
Suhayl al-Sharabi, however, is one of 23 men facing PRBs who were initially recommended for prosecution, until court rulings largely demolished the legitimacy of Guantánamo's military commissions. It seems likely that some -- or many -- of these men will have their ongoing imprisonment recommended, but as Andy notes, it is difficult to justify review processes recommending men for ongoing imprisonment, over 14 years since they were first captured, if they were not demonstrably and actively involved in terrorism.
We hope you have time to read the article and we welcome your feedback, as discussions regarding what should happen to the remaining prisoners will, one way or other, dominate the last nine months of the Obama presidency.
89 men are still held at Guantánamo, after two Libyans were freed in Senegal last week. Please read Andy's article about the releases
, on his website, and see our updated prisoner list
and our updated Periodic Review Board list
Our thanks also to everyone who, as part of our Countdown to Close Guantánamo
initiative, sent in photos reminding President Obama that, on March 25, he had just 300 days left to close Guantánamo before leaving office, as he promised on his second day in office in January 2009.
We are delighted to note that we received over 130 photos of supporters with the "300 days to go" poster, and have now received over 300 photos since launching the countdown in January. Please have a look at all the photos we have received here
The next date is May 14, marking 250 days until President Obama leaves office, and if you'd like to support this next step in the countdown, please print off a poster
, take a photo with it, and send it to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
What else you can do
If you want to do more, please feel free to call the White House on 202-456-1111 or 202-456-1414 or submit a comment online
You can also encourage your Senators and Representatives to support President Obama's efforts to close the prison. Find your Senators here
, and your Representatives here
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