Statement from the Center for Victims of Torture on National Day of Action Against Guantánamo

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Statement from the Center for Victims of Torture on National Day of Action Against Guantánamo

St. Paul, MN – The Center for Victims of Torture™ (CVT) today issued the following statement on this National Day of Action Against Guantánamo. January 11 marks the tenth anniversary of the arrival of the first detainees at Naval Station, Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

As a torture treatment rehabilitation center that has extended healing services to more than 20,000 victims of torture, CVT supports a safe environment where detainees held in American custody are treated humanely in accordance with U.S. laws and obligations under the Convention Against Torture, the Geneva Conventions and other international human rights standards.

Guantánamo prisoners include terrorism suspects detained without charge or trial and authorized for indefinite detention under the new legal authorization for indefinite detention approved as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112-81). Some of these detainees have been cleared for transfer by both the Bush and Obama Administrations. CVT argued vigorously during Congressional consideration of these provisions that indefinite detention rises to the level of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

CVT remains deeply concerned about past reports of abuse, torture and deaths of detainees at Guantánamo and other U.S. detention facilities. CVT urges the U.S. Government to be transparent about its detention policies. Monitoring organizations, such as the International Committee of the Red Cross and the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, should have unlimited access to Guantánamo and all detention facilities and detainees to ensure they are not mistreated under the norms of international human rights law.

CVT also calls for the creation of an independent, nonpartisan commission to examine and report publicly on torture and cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment of detainees in the period since September 11, 2001. Uncovering how serious errors in judgment became U.S. policy will better position us to prevent other abuses in the future.

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CVT is a nonprofit based in St. Paul with an office in Washington D.C. and projects in Africa and the Middle East. Visit


Brad Robideau
brobideau [at] (brobideau [at]

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Jenni Bowring-McDonough
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+1 612-436-4886 (office) or +1 651-226-3858 (mobile)
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