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US: Grant Rights Groups Full Access to Guantanamo

Outside Review Needed to Ensure Transparency, Compliance With International Law

NEW YORK - Four leading human rights and civil liberties organizations today sent a letter to President Barack Obama asking that they be granted full access to the Guantanamo Bay detention center so that they can review the conditions of confinement and make recommendations for revising US detention policies. 

The American Civil Liberties Union, Amnesty International USA, Human Rights First, and Human Rights Watch have had permission to observe the military commissions at Guantanamo since August 2004, but have thus far not been allowed access the detention center.

On January 22, President Obama issued an executive order requiring a review of detention conditions at Guantanamo to ensure compliance with the Geneva Conventions and all other applicable laws. In the letter, the groups said that allowing them full access to the prison, "will be welcomed as another break from the prior administration's policies on detainees, and set an example that will help advance human rights worldwide."


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