Scotland: Guantanamo demonstration at US Consulate in Edinburgh

On the day marking the fifth ‘anniversary’ (11 January) of the first ‘war on terror’ detainees being transported to the US military prison at Guantánamo Bay in Cuba, Amnesty International issued a fresh statement condemning the camp.

Amnesty International’s Programme Director Scotland, John Watson said:

"Five years on from the first sinister scenes of men in orange jump-suits, ear-muffs and blind-folds being off-loaded from planes at Guantánamo Bay, it’s become shockingly clear that the US has created a travesty of justice.

"Guantánamo Bay has itself become an icon of lawlessness.

"Numerous reports of torture have sullied the US’s already stained reputation and Amnesty International is still barred from making meaningful camp inspections.

"Now, half a decade on and with not a single person yet found guilty of any offence, it’s time for the US to admit that this dangerous experiment with the principles of international law has failed, and failed miserably.

"We are calling for the immediate closure of Guantánamo Bay and for all other ‘war on terror’ detention centres to be identified and closed, with detainees being properly charged before fair courts or released to safe countries."

Amnesty International has consistently called on the Scottish Executive to investigate possible rendition flights landing at Scottish airports. In an Amnesty report last year, CIA planes including one dubbed the 'Guantánamo Express', were tracked around the world. Some of these planes have landed at Prestwick, Glasgow International, Edinburgh and RAF Leuchars.

Amnesty International is holding a demonstration outside the US consulate in Edinburgh on 11 January. People in Guantánamo-style orange boiler-suits, will be kneeling in the infamous 'submission' posture seen in numerous photographs of prisoners held at the camp.

This demonstration, together with events in London, Cardiff and Belfast, is part of a series of Amnesty International demonstrations against Guantánamo worldwide on 11 January, including demonstrations in New York, Tokyo, Rome, Madrid and Israel.

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