Hunger Strike-Out

Guantanamo Data Ditched


The motto of the Guantanamo Bay detention center is "safe, humane, legal, transparent detention." But the center's commitment to transparency no longer includes reports about detainee hunger strikes.

The facility, located in a U.S. enclave on Cuba, houses 164 prisoners, some of whom have never been charged with crimes and are being held indefinitely without trial. Since 2005 many of the inmates have protested their imprisonment with hunger strikes. In December 2013, officials at Guantanamo said that they will no longer release information about the number of prisoners on hunger strike each day, as they had in the past.

"JTF [Joint Task Force] Guantanamo allows detainees to peacefully protest, but will not further their protests by reporting the numbers to the public," Navy Cmdr. John Filostrat, who oversees the camp's public relations, said, according to the Miami Herald. "The release of this information serves no operational purpose and detracts from the more important issues, which are the welfare of detainees and the safety and security of our troops."

The final hunger strike report, released on December 2, stated that 15 prisoners were fasting. All of them were in poor enough condition that they had to be force-fed.