Monday, January 11, 2016

MEDIA RELEASE: History in the Making: London Guantánamo Campaign to Mark Fourteenth Anniversary of Guantánamo Bay with Candlelight Vigil outside US Embassy, Monday 11 January 2016, 6-8pm

For immediate release: Monday 11 January 2016

The London Guantánamo Campaign [1] and human rights activists will gather for a candlelight vigil, History in the Making [2], outside the US Embassy in Grosvenor Square, London, from 6-8pm, to mark the 14th anniversary of the opening of the Guantánamo Bay prison camp.

Activists will stand outside the US Embassy holding up letters spelling out: “Close Guantánamo” and will hold a candlelight vigil calling for Barack Obama to fulfil his promise to close the prison camp during his last year in office. 

Aisha Maniar, organiser from the London Guantánamo Campaign, says, "When Barack Obama became US president in 2009, he promised to close Guantánamo within one year. Now, with one year left of his term in office, there are still over 100 prisoners. Almost all are held without charge or trial after 14 years.

“While recent prisoner releases are welcome, most of these have been subject to inexplicable delay. This includes the release of British resident Shaker Aamer more than 8 years after he was cleared and the British Prime Minister sought his return.

“Obama no longer plans to end indefinite arbitrary detention for the remaining prisoners, and his plan to close Guantánamo merely involves displacing this extralegal regime, moving the prisoners elsewhere. This is extremely disappointing from a man who once made closing Guantánamo and restoring the rule of law one of his main pledges if he became president. None can be as disappointed as the remaining prisoners, who still have no guarantees they will ever be released or even know why they are held.” 



1. The London Guantánamo Campaign was set up in 2006 and campaigns for justice for all prisoners at Guantánamo Bay, for the closure of this and other secret prisons, and an end to the practice of extraordinary rendition.  

Since 2008, the London Guantánamo Campaign has each year been the sole organiser of the UK protest to mark the anniversary of Guantánamo Bay opening on 11 January 2002. The London Guantánamo Campaign has had no communication with We Stand With Shaker or Cage concerning the reported organisation of other events outside the US Embassy and is not liable for them. The annual protest is a public event and all are welcome.

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