Grupo de Chicago exige el cierre de Guantánamo

On Friday, Jan.11, at the 11th anniversary of the opening of Guantanamo detention center in 2002, many Chicagoland organizations demanded that President Obama “shut it down” and end conditions they describe as “Guantanamo for Everyone” that were begun by George Bush and have been institutionalized under Barack Obama. Four years after President Obama issued an executive order to close Guantánamo, 166 men still languish in captivity there; 86 have already been cleared for release but remain incarcerated.
“The Bush regime’s policy of indefinite detention has been institutionalized by the Obama administration,” said Jill McLaughlin, a representative of Chicago World Can’t Wait. “Now Obama has signed the NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) for 2013 that authorizes military detention of US citizens, anywhere, any time. War criminals should be prosecuted, not dissenters like the NATO5 and whistleblowers like Bradley Manning.”
“Guantanamo should be closed and all the people detained must either be charged and fairly tried or released,” said Bob Palmer, a representative of Illinois Coalition Against Torture (ICAT), which was active in procuring the successful passage of an anti-torture resolution by the Chicago City Council in January 2012. He added that the United States government has admitted that 86 of the 166 men currently held at Guantánamo are being held for no reason and that many of them were students, humanitarian aid workers, missionaries, or economic migrants just caught in the wrong place at the wrong time, often rounded up for the substantial bounty payments (averaging 5,000 dollars a head) that were paid by the US military for supposed al-Qaeda and Taliban suspects.
“It’s time for us to understand that these abusive practices at the federal level have spilled into a range of abusive prosecutions and incarcerations right here in Chicago and elsewhere in Illinois,” added Joe Scarry, who is a member of the NATO5 Defense Committee and a representative of SALAM Illinois, which works to publicize the discriminatory incarceration of Muslims in the Marion, IL, penitentiary.
Groups participating in the Chicago event included Chicago World Can’t Wait, Illinois Coalition Against Torture, Christian Peacemaker Teams, IL Amnesty International, Voices for Creative Non-Violence, 8th Day Center for Justice, Wellington UCC, Gay Liberation Network, TAMMS Year Ten, Committee against Political Repression, Northwest Indiana Veterans for Peace, National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT) and others.

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