|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
FEBRUARY 2, 2005
|CONTACT: Institute for Public Accuracy
Sam Husseini, 202-347-0020
David Zupan, 541-484-9167
Gonzales Nomination/Guantánamo Ruling
WASHINGTON -- February 2 -- The Senate is expected to debate the nomination of Alberto Gonzales for attorney general until Thursday, a nominee that lawyers at the Center for Constitutional Rights describe as one of the architects of Guantánamo as well as the torture and abuse of detainees.
U.S. District Court Judge Joyce Green on Monday ruled that special military tribunals used by the Pentagon to determine so-called enemy combatant status and the continued detention of those detained at Guantánamo Bay are illegal. (For background on the ruling and the role of the Center for Constitutional Rights in the case, see below.)
The following legal analysts from the Center for Constitutional Rights can address the Gonzales nomination in addition to the Guantánamo ruling.
BARBARA OLSHANSKY, email@example.com, www.ccr-ny.org
RACHEL MEEROPOL, www.sevenstories.com/Book/index.cfm?GCOI=58322100617850
MICHAEL RATNER, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.humanrightsnow.org
Ratner stated: "Alberto Gonzales cannot be separated from the utter illegality of Guantanamo. Guantanamo is where torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment began; it began because Gonzales said it could by denying the protections of Geneva and the Convention Against Torture that required humane treatment of detainees. Stress positions, stripping, hooding, sexual humiliation is considered cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, if not torture. Gonzales still insists that non-citizens outside the United States can be treated inhumanely. The Senate is about to confirm a man who has his hands deep in the blood of the conspiracy of torture in this country. Anybody who votes for him, knowing what they now know, could conceivably, if trials such as those at Nuremberg ever initiated, be tried as part of a conspiracy to commit torture and other human rights abuses."
[Background:] Judge Joyce Green also ruled that evidence resulting from coercion and torture could be challenged and that a number of the detainees should be treated as POWs. The Center for Constitutional Rights and associated counsel filed the habeas petitions before Judge Green. The group also won the Supreme Court case Rasul v. Bush and has condemned the administration for failing to comply with the decision and give the Guantánamo detainees the chance to challenge their detentions in federal court.