Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Saudi Arabia: Detainee Letter Exposes Alleged Guantanamo Horrors | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page

Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat– Prison guards in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, fired on detainees in the US military base, used noxious gases against them and insulted the Quran, a recent letter by a Saudi inmate revealed.

The letter, seen by Asharq al Awsat, was written ten days before the Pentagon announced three inmates had committed suicide on 10 June. The two Saudi citizens were identified as Mani al Utaybi and Yasser al Zharani. Ali Abdallah Ahmad, from Yemen, was also found dead. The letter was handed over to the detainee’s lawyer who in turned forwarded it to al Zahrani’s legal representative.

In what appears to be a reference to two of the three inmates who took their own lives, the detainee wrote, “Two detainees are on the verge of death… perhaps they are dying or have died poisoned.” The detainee, whose identity and nationality remain secret, in order to protect him, added, “An Afghan inmate was wounded after 12 shots were fired at him, as he tried to protect his Quran from being desecrated.”

“The gas used is stored in a red canister, with black writing on it. There’s a yellow button that [guards] press and a label MK9 Magnum” written on it, the detainee wrote.

Meanwhile, Dr. Said al Ghamdi, who supervises the committee which carried out an autopsy of the two Saudis, said the information revealed in the letter would be taken into consideration, as the real cause of death is investigated.

The Pentagon’s announcement that three detainees had committed suicide was received with suspicion by Saudi lawyers and the two men’s families blamed the US authorities in Cuba for the death of their children.

Brigadier-General Talal al Zahrani, Yasser’s father, said the letter proved the family was right to doubt the official US version of events.

He told Asharq al Awsat that he was considering suing the base’s administration in a US federal court.