Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Detainees Release Open Letter from Gitmo North

Open Letter to the People of Canada from the Detainees at Canada's Guantanamo Bay

We are writing to you because the government of Canada will not speak with us. We are three Muslim men who have been detained under a security certificate, without charge or bail, for between 5 and 6 and a half years. We are not allowed to know the evidence against us. Many groups such as Amnesty International have called security certificates fundamentally flawed and unfair. The United Nations has criticized Canada for this practice. Right now, the Supreme Court is deciding what Canada should do about them.

We are held at a place called the Kingston Immigration Holding Centre (KIHC), located on the grounds of Millhaven Penitentiary. Some people have called this place Guantanamo Bay North. Like the detainees in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, we are held indefinitely. This is a kind of psychological torture that is almost unimaginable. We do not know when, or if, we will be released from jail. We still have many months, and possibly years, of jail before us while our cases go through different court proceedings. We have been very patient and done our best to deal with a process where it is impossible to defend yourself. And we will remain patient, because we know that ultimately, we will be let out, because we are innocent men. But sometimes there is only so much human beings should be required to accept before they raise their voice in peaceful protest. Right now we are on a liquid-only hunger strike protesting the conditions of our detention. For Mohammad Mahjoub, it is day 45, for Mahmoud Jaballah and Hassan Almrei, it is day 34. We do not want to be on hunger strike. It is hard on us and our families. But it is the only voice we have.

(Click here to read more)