Amnesty tells Biden to close Guantanamo camp

President Joe Biden

US President Joe Biden

Human rights watchdog Amnesty International has urged U.S. President Joe Biden to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in Cuba which has been operational for 20 years this month.

The camp stands for arbitrariness, injustice and torture, Amnesty’s U.S. expert, Sumit Bhattacharyya, told dpa in Washington.

Bhattacharyya urged Biden to close the camp and bring people who were involved in torture or other illegal activities there to justice.

The camp now has 39 detainees left.

It was established under the government of Republican President George W Bush to hold suspected Islamist terrorists without trial after Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and Washington DC.

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Bush’s successor, Democrat Barack Obama, wanted to close it, but failed due to opposition in the U.S. Congress, while Republican Donald Trump wanted to keep the camp open.

Biden, who was Obama’s vice-president, is trying to push through with plans to close the facility.

To mark the upcoming 20th anniversary of the opening of the camp, Amnesty International is planning protests in several cities in Germany and other countries on Saturday.

The first prisoners were brought to the Guantanamo camp – located on a U.S. military base in Cuba – on Jan. 11, 2002.

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