Letter from U.S. Ambassador re: Detention of Detainees at Guantanamo, August 12, 2004

This letter is from a U.S. Ambassador replying to a request on the status of six (6) detainees who were apprehended and currently being held at Guantanamo. The Ambassador does not discuss the individuals specifically, but does address the legal authority under which the U.S. holding the detainees, and assures the recipient that every person held at Guantanamo is being held in conformity with international law and under humane conditions.

Doc_type: 
Letter
Doc_date: 
Tuesday, August 13, 2002
Doc_rel_date: 
Wednesday, December 29, 2004
Doc_text: 

UNCLASSIFIED
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Dear
I am respondingso yaw Letter of July 23 and your request for information on the six individuals detained earlier this year in IlI B7(A)
My government has stated on numerous occasions that U.S. military forces, working in
close co erarion with thel I took control last January of
these ' nationals. That action was taken because these individuals posed a credible
security to erican personnel and facilities here as well as to the people of

I 1 U.S. forces transported the six from) on January
Guantanamo Bay, .
...i

.
I am not in a position to address the particular circumstances of the detention or the
activities that led to the detention of any of the individuals at Guantanamo. My government
views individuals detained in Guantanamo as enemy combatants captured in connection with an
on-going armed conflict and related attacks against the United States, its citizens and citizens of
numerous other nations. Enemy combatants continue to pose a serious security threat to the
United Stares and its coalition partners. They are being held in accordance with the international
law of armed conflict, which permits the United States to hold enemy combatants at least for the

duration of hostilities.
I can assure you that the United States is treating these individuals humanely and in a
manner consistent with the principles of the Third Geneva Convention of 1949. Representatives
of the• international Committee of the Red Cross are at Guantanamo and meet with detainees
individually and privately. Al! detainees are provided three meals a day that meet . Muslim
dietary laws, as well as medical care, clothing, shelter, showers, and opportunities to worship.

Under the law of armed conflict, captured enemy combatants have no right to counsel or
to the COWLS to challenge their detention. If and when a detainee is charged with a crime, be
would have the right to counsel and fundamental procedural safeguards. To date, no detainee at
Guantanamo has been charged with a crime. As for communication with family members,
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF STATE
REVIEW AUTHORITY: HARRY R MELONE UNCLASSIFIED DOS-000752
DA.TE/CASE ID: 30 NOV 2004 20Q303827
.1?) 006
fagathssiffIED____l
10/31/02 THU 17:49 FAX 202 647 5405

detainees are allowed to correspond by mail with family members, subject to screening for • security and operational purposes. Not all detainees have been ser.! mail, and not 41 elect to AIM re letters home. Telephor.e calls and visits are not possible for operational reasons.
I hope this information is helpful. As my Embassy receives any further information, we will forward it to you as quickly as possible.
Sincerely,

DOS-000753
UNCLASSIFIED

Doc_nid: 
6103
Doc_type_num: 
69