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Home / Press Release / Feinstein Urges DoD to Stop Force Feeding of Guantanamo Detainees
June 19, 2013

Feinstein Urges DoD to Stop Force Feeding of Guantanamo Detainees

Washington, D.C. – Human Rights First welcomes today’s letter from Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel urging the Department of Defense to stop the force-feeding of detainees at Guantanamo Bay.

“Senator Feinstein is absolutely correct to call into question the force-feeding at Guantanamo.  Not only is it inconsistent with international norms, but the practice appears to be inconsistent with Bureau of Prisons policy,” said Human Rights First’s Raha Wala.  “The real underlying issue is that Guantanamo remains a stuck problem and will until the administration begins transferring the cleared detainees.  Force-feeding detainees is not going to solve the administration’s Guantanamo problem.”

Human Rights First recently signed on to a letter with 19 other organizations urging the Department of Defense to cease the practice of force-feeding because of the treatment is “inherently cruel, inhuman, and degrading” and condemned by the World Medical Association.

Last week Human Rights First President and CEO Elisa Massimino sent aletter to White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, urging him to take immediate action to shutter the Guantanamo Bay. McDonough had toured the detention facility with Senators Feinstein and John McCain (R-AZ). The  letter also encouraged the administration to seek waiver authority from Congress to permit the transfer of detainees to the United States for prosecution.

For more information or to speak with Wala, contact Brenda Bowser Soder at bowsersoderb@humanrightsfirst.org or 202-370-3323.