Military, detainee lawyers clash on number of Gitmo hunger strikers

[JURIST] A lawyer for 11 detainees held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archives] says that 90 percent of the 505 prison camp detainees are participating in a hunger strike [JURIST report] in "varying degrees," while US military officials have said that only 91 detainees are participating. The military defines a hunger strike as missing 9 or more consecutive meals, while Kristine Huskey, a Washington lawyer says detainees who miss a meal or two in a day and refuse to take liquids should be considered on strike. Army public affairs office Major Jeffrey Weir said Sunday that despite some of the detainees' desire to commit "a slow form of suicide," "no one is anywhere near death." The detainees are participating in their second hunger strike since July to protest their indefinite imprisonments. Many of the detainees have been held for three and a half years and only 4 have been charged with war crimes. British-born attorney Clive Stafford Smith [BBC profile], who represents about 40 detainees, says "The military wants to downplay this...The truth is, these guys are going to die." USA Today has more.

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