On the 11th anniversary of the opening of notorious US Guantanamo military prison and torture facility in Cuba, nine former British inmates at the camp gathered to share their bitter experiences while still one more Briton remains held there, Press TV reports.
British citizen Shaker Aamer is among more than a hundred captives still held in the controversial US military prison without any formal charges brought against them, disallowing any chance for legal representation or challenging terror allegations.
The gathering of the former Guantanamo inmates comes as the censured detention and torture facility remains open over four year after US President Barack Obama repeatedly pledged to shut it down as part of his pre-election “change” campaign in 2008.
While some of the ex-captives at Guantanamo talked on camera, others could not, offering at times emotional details about the harsh treatment they underwent at the military prison and how it had changed their lives forever.
“Every year I tell myself maybe…this year Guantanamo will finish, but unfortunately it is 11 years now and still there are people in Guantanamo that authorities at Guantanamo say they are cleared to be released but they have not been released yet,” said former inmate Bisher al-Rawi.
Many former Guantanamo detainees in Britain now work to highlight the injustices they suffered at the hands of US military and intelligence authorities and how lucky they have been to be freed from the facility.
This year’s anniversary comes as John Brennan, one of the chief advocates of the so-called “enhanced interrogation” or torturing of ‘terror suspects’ at Guantanamo and other foreign-based detention facilities run by the US military, has been nominated by Obama as the next director of the country’s spy agency CIA.
As Guantanamo turns eleven, 169 inmates still remain there. Almost half have been cleared, yet there are fears that they probably will never be released.