Less than 3% of all Guantanamo prisoners will be tried, prosecutor announces

June 11, 2013

Less than 3% of all Guantanamo prisoners will be tried, prosecutor announces

Commenting on the announcement by Guantanamo’s Chief Prosecutor that a total of just 20 detainees – down from a previous estimate of 36 – are to receive trials, Cori Crider, a Guantanamo attorney and Strategic Director at human rights charity Reprieve said:

“With nearly 800 people having been sent to Guantanamo over the years, this represents a total of under 3% who will even make it to trial – let alone be found guilty. This shockingly low figure demonstrates what a terrible mistake Guantanamo has been, and just how many lives have been ruined for no good reason. Meanwhile, more than half the prisoners still held in Guantanamo have been cleared for release, yet are going nowhere. It is high time President Obama got his act together and delivered on his promise to close this prison.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

1. For further information, please contact Donald Campbell in Reprieve’s press office: +44 (0) 207 553 8166 / donald.campbell@reprieve.org.uk

2. Reuters today reported that “Far fewer prisoners will be tried in the Guantanamo war crimes tribunals than the Obama administration originally planned…The president’s Guantanamo Review Task Force had said 36 detainees could be prosecuted, but the tribunal’s chief prosecutor put the figure at 20 at most…He said captives who would be prosecuted by the Guantanamo tribunals included the seven whose trials are finished and the six facing pre-trial hearings this week and next.” http://uk.reuters.com/article/2013/06/11/uk-usa-guantanamo-idUKBRE95A0P320130611

3. Reprieve, a legal action charity, uses the law to enforce the human rights of prisoners, from death row to Guantánamo Bay. Reprieve investigates, litigates and educates, working on the frontline, to provide legal support to prisoners unable to pay for it themselves. Reprieve promotes the rule of law around the world, securing each person’s right to a fair trial and saving lives. Clive Stafford Smith is the founder of Reprieve and has spent 25 years working on behalf of people facing the death penalty in the USA.

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