This statement was written by Bahraini former detainee at Guantanamo Bay Abdulla Alnoaimi in response to the deaths of Mani Al Utaybi, Yasser Al Zahrani and Ali Abdullah Ahmed at the military prison on Saturday 10th June.
As of my old experience of Guantanamo Bay, I have some points of view on the death of the detainees.
Was it "suicide"?
In the end of December 2002, a big incident happened in the camp which the whole world did not know about. A former Saudi detainee was knocked unconscious and went into a coma for long months. The incident started at night when the MP’s (military police) were very rude and aggressive, full of hate. They went to the detainees in Block India (Isolation block), they kept entering detainees cells' and hitting them and then going to the next and so on.
They entered the cells of sleeping people, some who were praying, and some very young guys, hitting them. The guards then turned off the light and kept going to cells to hit the detainees till all of a sudden they screamed, “TURN ON THE LIGHT“.
They ran and turned the light on, and came to the cell that they stopped at in the hitting process they were doing. A detainee’s feet could be seen out of the door to the corridor. We detainees could see a part of the incident by looking in some of the door holes, right and left.
An investigation team came afterwards and took measurements on the ground and talked to the guards then left. The detainee was taken in a hurry and never was seen after that day for a long period of several months. Everybody in the camp was talking about it, and the "big event" was that the guards have killed the detainee.
After a long period of time, months or so, we were informed that that detainee was still alive. Some detainees had seen him on a wheel chair - including me - and asked him "What happened? The officers claim that you hanged your self?”
The detainee answered me "How? All that I remember is that the guards were hitting the brothers in their cells, and all of a sudden in the dark I lost conscious till this day."
That person, Mishal Al Harbi, a Saudi detainee in his early 20’s is living the rest of his life in a wheel chair and was almost dead on the excuse of suicide. He’s now released in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia .
A War at Guantanamo
Reasons for deaths, the American MPs would tell us long ago, were that those people who committed suicide were mentally ill, and it's psychological situation.
However, that’s not true, because the mentally ill people - of which there are few in the camp - have observers. And all tools to with which they could harm themselves are taken from them. But those people who died weren’t under watch. What made them do it?
In my opinion there may have been a big war started in Guantanamo after the fight in Camp 4, where the military will take very strict actions against all detainees without thinking of the reasons that made the detainees attack the guards. On other hand, it may be some sort of a personal revenge - the military must have taken actions against the detainees in religion.
They must have done something to the Quran, they must’ve done something to other brothers in a savage way, harmed them physically or sexually.
"Mass suicide" in protest?
The camp in Guantanamo Bay is a high security one and there is no chance for the detainees to commit suicide. As I have seen my self, they have emergency plans for all of these things. And why three detainees at once?
That gives me a signal that the suicide plan was by at least more than 15 detainees - where the guards could stop most of them but missed three of the detainees, who died.
For sure there are injured people. The American government would not speak about it but spoke about the three deaths that they can't hide.
Those three people who did this, I know them very well. I was next to them while they were on hunger strike and they were on hunger strike till death.
And if nothing happens about Guantanamo (in response to the deaths) there are more people who will do it, and I can tell you who they are.
Finally, sorry to say this, but the whole world would say something if it was alive, but the world is dead and not at all alive on this issue.
Former Detainee No. 159