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Write to the Forgotten Prisoners in Guantánamo – for the 10th Anniversary of the Prison’s Opening on January 11, 2012

Write to the Forgotten Prisoners in Guantánamo – for the 10th Anniversary of the Prison’s Opening on January 11, 2012

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Published by: RepentChristian on Apr 19, 2013
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Write to the Forgotten Prisoners inGuantánamo – for the 10th Anniversary of the Prison’s Opening on January 11, 2012
9.12.11A year and a half ago, two Facebook friends, Shahrina J. Ahmed and MahfujaBint Ammu, drew on my research aboutGuantánamo for a letter-writing campaign,in which they asked their friends andothers on Facebook to volunteer to writeto each of the remaining prisoners inGuantánamo. Shahrina announced theletter-writing campaign viaa Facebook noteentitled, “What if YOU were tortured… and no one knew about it??!” and I then publicized it via an article entitled,Writeto the Forgotten Prisoners in Guantánamo.Mahfuja revived that campaign back in July, with a new Facebook note entitled, “Ramadhan and Eid spent tortured,” and a fresh appeal for people to write to the remaining 171 prisoners inGuantánamo, and I also publicized it again, and noted that the total of 171 prisoners was just ten lessthan it was a year before, and that two of those tenleft in coffins, havingdied at the prison. Unfortunately, since the last campaign, not a single prisoner has left Guantánamo, as Congressimposed restrictions on the release of prisoners, demanding that no prisoner could be releasedunless the defense secretary signed off on the safety of doing so, which Jeh Johnson, thePentagon’s General Counsel,recently described as a demand that was “onerous and near  impossible to satisfy.” He added, “Not one Guantánamo detainee has been certified for transfer since this legal restriction has been imposed.”However, the administration also bears a huge responsibility for failing to insist on releasingcleared prisoners at the start of Obama’s Presidency (66 cleared prisoners were inherited fromGeorge W. Bush), for capitulating to criticism regarding plans to bring cleared prisoners who couldn’t be safely repatriated to live int the US (the Uighurs), for  imposing a moratorium on releasing prisoners to Yemen (which still stands) in January 2010, after it was revealed that thefailed Christmas Day plane bomber had been recruited in Yemen, for failing to insist that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his alleged co-conspirators in the 9/11 attacks should be brought to theUS mainland for federal court trials, and, generally, for allowing a situation to emerge in which,as the 10th anniversary approaches, Guantánamomay never close.Introducingthe latest campaign, entitled, “Ten Years of Torture!” Shahrina wrote:
 
Imagine, ten years of abuse; ten years of living in fear of what torture you are to experience next;ten years of life without your friends and family; ten years of hearing the screams, cries and pleads of other inmates; ten years of watching the death of fellow inmates as they slowly taketheir own lives; ten years of being accused and labelled with a crime for which evidence andtrials are not presented. Imagine, ten years of your life spent in Guantánamo Bay.How would you cope?The 11th of January 2012 will mark the tenth anniversary since the opening of Guantánamo Bay.It marks the day where your brothers in humanity became victims of immense torture, abuse,ridicule, isolation and discrimination. 171 brothers remain in this horrible situation. Thus, tomark this date, we are initiating another letter writing campaign!Alhamdulillaah! Show these brothers they are not forgotten. They are not alone. They are heard.Visitors tothe Facebook campaign pagewill see who has already signed up, and can either addtheir names, or, if they wish, write independently. All the letters via the Facebook campaign will be sent on January 4, although I see no reason to delay sending messages of support for the prisoners. Do please note that any messages that can be construed as political should be avoided,as they may lead to the letters not making it past the Pentagon’s censors, but be aware that your messages may not get through anyway — although please don’t let that put you off!On the 10th anniversary of the opening of Guantánamo, messages of solidarity are moreimportant now than ever, as President Obama has so throughly failed to close the prison. Bisher al-Rawi, a British resident who was freed from Guantánamo in March 2007, has explained howletters of support from people who had written as part of Amnesty international’s letter-writingcampaigns helped him:Amnesty, and what it stands for, is a torch of hope; that is how it was when I was inGuantánamo, when I received letters of support through Amnesty. In that lonely cell withnothing but emptiness to hold a photocopy of a letter or a card and read the words on it meant somuch. They opened up the walls and gave me hope, and whispered to me: “You are notforgotten.”So please, go ahead and write. If you are an Arabic speaker, or speak any other languages spoken by the prisoners besides English, feel free to write in those languages, and if you want any moreencouragement about the significance for prisoners of receiving letters, then please visit thisAmnesty International page,which features a short film of former prisoner Omar Deghayesshowing letters he received in Guantánamo and explaining how much they meant to him — andto his fellow prisoners. This was filmed as part of an interview with Omar that is featured in thedocumentary film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (directed by Polly Nash andmyself), and available on DVDhere— or herefor the US. Also, please feel free to let me know if you have written a letter, and also if you receive a reply.For further information about the remaining prisoners, seeA list of the remaining Guantanamo prisoners (2010)andGuantánamo: The Definitive Prisoner List (Part 4).
 
Please write to the remaining 171 prisoners in Guantánamo
When writing to the prisoners please ensure you include their full name and ISN (internmentserial number) below (these are the numbers before their names, i.e. Shaker Aamer ISN 239) andaddress to:Camp DeltaP.O. Box 160Washington D.C. 20053USAAlso please note that the list includes one prisoner who has been released, but who I have beenunable to identify, because his name has not been publicly disclosed. He is an Afghan released inSpain last July.1. 004 Wasiq, Abdul-Haq (Afghanistan)2. 006 Noori, Mullah Norullah (Afghanistan)3. 007 Fazil, Mullah Mohammed (Afghanistan)4. 026 Ghazi, Fahed (Yemen)5. 027 Uthman, Uthman Abdul Rahim Mohammed (Yemen)6. 028 Al Alawi, Muaz (Yemen)7. 029 Al Ansi, Mohammed (Yemen)8. 030 Al Hakimi, Ahmed (Yemen)9. 031 Al Mujahid, Mahmoud (Yemen)10. 033 Al Adahi, Mohammed (Yemen)11. 034 Al Yafi, Abdullah (Yemen)12. 035 Qader Idris, Idris (Yemen)13. 036 Idris, Ibrahim (Sudan)14. 037 Al Rahabi, Abdul Malik (Yemen)15. 038 Al Yazidi, Ridah (Tunisia)16. 039 Al Bahlul, Ali Hamza (Yemen)17. 040 Al Mudafari, Abdel Qadir (Yemen)18. 041 Ahmad, Majid (Yemen)19. 042 Shalabi, Abdul Rahman (Saudi Arabia)20. 043 Moqbel, Samir (Yemen)21. 044 Ghanim, Mohammed (Yemen)22. 045 Al Rezehi, Ali Ahmad (Yemen)23. 054 Al Qosi, Ibrahim (Sudan)24. 063 Al Qahtani, Mohammed (Saudi Arabia)25. 088 Awad, Adham Ali (Yemen)26. 091 Al Saleh, Abdul (Yemen)27. 115 Naser, Abdul Rahman (Yemen)28. 117 Al Warafi, Muktar (Yemen)29. 128 Al Bihani, Ghaleb (Yemen)30. 131 Ben Kend, Salem (Yemen)31. 152 Al Khalaqi, Asim (Yemen)

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