Over 40 Gitmo detainees now force-fed

The hunger strike shows no sign of ending, as senators and officials prepare to visit camp

Published June 7, 2013 8:20PM (EDT)

As a bipartisan cadre of leading senators and officials, including White House chief of staff Denis McDonough, prepares to head to Gitmo to review the dire situation at the camp, new figures indicate that the number of detainees being force-fed through nasal tubes has jumped to 41. Despite Obama vowing to see the camp closed (a long unkept promise), ten more detainees have joined the ranks of the force-fed since the president's speech. International experts have decried the act of force-feeding prisoners as inhumane. The Guardian reported:

Yet, despite the warm reception to that speech, the hunger strike at the base continues to increase in scope as more detainees are ending up being force fed through tubes put up their noses and into their stomachs.

"The hunger strike grows for two reasons: the military's refusal to negotiate with the men in a productive way and because the president has taken no action in spite of his words," said Carlos Warner, a lawyer who represents several of the detainees on strike...

Lawyers said the tempo of the strike was not changing. "We have had several phone calls this week with our clients and there is no sign of the strike ending. The men are suffering. One client reported he has lost 70lbs during his peaceful hunger strike," Warner said.


By Natasha Lennard

Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email nlennard@salon.com.

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Force-feeding Gitmo Guantanamo Guantanamo Hunger Strike Hunger Strike