For Immediate Release
Prominent Illinois Former Prosecutors and Judge Declare U.S. Prisons Fit to House Guantanamo Detainees
Illinois signatories of 'Beyond Guantanamo: A Bipartisan Declaration' send open letter to Illinois congressional delegation and public officials
WASHINGTON - In an open letter sent to the Illinois congressional delegation
and the state's public officials today, three prominent Illinoisans
supported the use of federal and state prisons, including the one at
Thomson, Illinois, to house Guantanamo detainees pre-trial and
post-conviction. An effort coordinated by the Constitution Project, the
letter is joined by Abner J. Mikva, former Illinois member of Congress
and former federal judge, Thomas P. Sullivan, former U.S. Attorney for
the Northern District of Illinois, and Dan K. Webb, also a former U.S.
Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. In part, the letter states:
"We write to support the use of federal and state prisons,
including the one at Thomson, IL, to house Guantanamo detainees
pre-trial and post-conviction. We support trials for the detainees in
our federal courts, which means that they must be brought to the U.S.
to stand trial and thus must be housed in appropriate prisons in this
country. "While we oppose military commissions and preventive
detention, and thus also oppose using prison facilities in connection
with these purposes, we strongly reject charges that our country's
prisons cannot securely hold terrorism suspects or other dangerous
individuals...We urge the elected officials of Illinois to reject the
irresponsible fear-mongering and partisan politics that have bogged
down the inevitable, and necessary, closing of Guantanamo."
Mikva, Sullivan, and Webb have joined with 133 other prominent Americans in issuing Beyond Guantanamo: A Bipartisan Declaration, supporting trials in federal courts for the detainees and future terrorism suspects and opposing preventive detention. The Declaration
is signed by former federal prosecutors, judges, diplomats, members of
Congress, and other government officials from the Kennedy to the George
W. Bush administrations, as well as foreign policy and national
security experts, military and bar leaders, and family members of
victims of the 9/11 attacks.
To view the open letter to the Illinois congressional delegation and public officials, go to: http://www.
To view Beyond Guantanamo: A Bipartisan Declaration and signatories, go to: http://www.
The Constitution Project is a politically independent think tank established in 1997 to promote and defend constitutional safeguards. More information about the Constitution Project is available at http://constitutionproject.org/.