Amnesty slams flawed US penal system

Guantanamo Bay prisoners
Amnesty International has called attention to the US and its failing human rights record due to its use of flawed detention and execution systems.

 

Amnesty slams flawed US penal system

Amnesty slams flawed US penal systemReviewed by مرتضی سرمدیان on May 13Rating:

On Friday, Amnesty International slammed the US for its indefinite detentions in Afghanistan and at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, as well as its flawed capital punishment system, AFP reported.

“Scores of men remained in indefinite military detention in Guantanamo as [US] President [Barack] Obama’s one-year deadline for closure of the facility there came and went,” the report recently released by the body said.

The organization’s annual global human rights report points to the execution of 46 people over the past year, in which the guilt of several of the defendants remained questionable. Some cases also included unclear proof of legal representation and mental impairment.

According to Amnesty International, of the 173 men currently detained at Guantanamo Bay, only three had been convicted under a military commission system, “which failed to meet international fair trial standards.”

“Military commission proceedings were conducted in a handful of cases, and the only Guantanamo detainee so far transferred to the US mainland for prosecution in a federal court was tried and convicted,” the report added.

Upon taking office, President Barack Obama signed an executive order to stop military commissions in order to close down the facility by 2010; however, this has not happened yet.

The organization accuses US authorities of also blocking efforts to “secure accountability and remedy for crimes under international law committed against detainees previously subjected to the USA’s secret detention and rendition program.”

As for Afghanistan, the reports criticizes the US for holding “hundreds” at the US airbase in Bagram without due process and for subjecting some to “torture and ill-treatment, including prolonged isolation, sleep deprivation, and exposure to extreme temperatures.”

The report further voiced concern over the “excessive force” used by US law enforcement. The use of Taser guns by police officers led to the death of some 45 people last year.

The country’s health care system was also among the matters mentioned in the report. “Hundreds of women continue to die from preventable pregnancy-related complications,” as a result of a lack of proper health care coverage, the report added.

 

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