For Immediate Release

Adnan Latif – the Face of Indefinite Detention – Dies at Guantánamo

CCR Blames Courts and Obama for Tragedy

NEW YORK - The Center for Constitutional Rights issued the following statement in response to the Defense Department’s announcement today of the death of Adnan Latif at Guantanamo—the ninth man to die since the prison opened, and the fourth on President Obama’s watch. 

Adnan Latif is the human face of indefinite detention at Guantánamo, a policy President Obama now owns. Mr. Latif, held without charge or trial, died a tragic and personal death—alone in a cell, thousands of miles from home, more than a decade after he was abducted and brought to Guantánamo Bay. Like other men, Mr. Latif had been on hunger strike for years to protest his innocence. His protests were in vain.
 
Adnan Latif was indeed innocent of any wrongdoing that would have justified his detention. President Obama’s Justice Department knew he was innocent but appealed a district court order directing his release rather than send him home to Yemen. The president has imposed a moratorium on all transfers to Yemen, which is why more than half of the remaining detainees are Yemenis. 
 
Adnan Latif was held indefinitely and ultimately for life because of his Yemeni citizenship, not his conduct. 
 
When the  D.C. Circuit overturned the order for Adnan Latif’s release, a strong dissenting opinion criticized the majority for not just “moving the goal posts, [but calling] the game in the government’s favor.” At the end of the day, the U.S. Supreme Court remained locked away in its ivory tower, ignoring an innocent man’s plea and its own promise of “meaningful review.” They all share in the responsibility for this innocent man’s fate.
 
Adnan Latif’s death is a stark reminder that locking up someone for more than a decade with no foreseeable end has irreparable human consequences. More men will die needlessly unless President Obama finally closes the prison. Adnan Latif’s death must be a clarion call to resume transfers and end this dark period. 
The Center for Constitutional Rights has led the legal battle over Guantánamo for the last 10 years – representing clients in two Supreme Court cases and organizing and coordinating hundreds of pro bono lawyers across the country, ensuring that nearly all the men detained at Guantánamo have had the option of legal representation. Among other Guantánamo cases, the Center represents the families of men who died at Guantánamo, and men who have been released and are seeking justice in international courts. In addition, CCR has been working through diplomatic channels to resettle men who remain at Guantánamo because they cannot return to their country of origin for fear of persecution and torture.
###

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

The Center for Constitutional Rights is dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Founded in 1966 by attorneys who represented civil rights movements in the South, CCR is a non-profit legal and educational organization committed to the creative use of law as a positive force for social change.

Share This Article

More in: