UN report demands Guantanamo base be closed

A UN investigation has concluded that the United States committed acts amounting to torture at Guantanamo Bay, including force-feeding detainees and subjecting them to prolonged solitary confinement, according to a draft report obtained today.

The report from five UN human rights experts accused the United States of violating the detainees’ rights to a fair trial, to freedom of religion and to health.

It recommended that the United States close Guantanamo Bay and revoke all special interrogation techniques authorised by the US Department of Defence.

“The apparent attempts by the US administration to reinterpret certain interrogation techniques as not reaching the threshold of torture in the framework of the struggle against terrorism are of utmost concern,” the draft report said.

US officials rejected the report, saying it was riddled with errors and treated statements from detainees’ lawyers as fact.

Its most significant flaw, that officials said, was that it judged US treatment of detainees according to peace-time human rights laws.

The United States contends that it is in a state of conflict and should be judged according to the laws of war.

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