Sunrise to Sunset Fast for Guantanamo Prisoners at Shannon

A one day solidarity fast is being organised at Shannon Airport on Saturday 7th September in support of the prisoners being held at Guantanamo Bay. The fast will run from sunrise (6.45am) to sunset (8pm), and members of the public are invited to join in for some or all of the fast. The event is being organised by Shannonwatch and Galway Alliance Against War.

"A total of 164 prisoners still remain at the notorious US-run Guantanamo Bay prison" said Shannonwatch spokesperson John Lannon. "Many of them have been detained for over 11 years without any contact with their families. They have not faced trial for any crimes. They have been bound, beaten and made to suffer extremes of temperature. They have been denied justice, first under President George W. Bush, and now under President Barack Obama".

"As Shannon Airport was one of the stops used by the aircraft that kidnapped and brought these men to Guantanamo, it is particularly appropriate that they should be remembered at the airport. For that reason the fast is being held there as a small symbolic sacrifice to draw attention to their plight and to Shannon's shameful role in putting them there".

 "To date successive Irish governments have failed to acknowledge or investigate the use of Shannon Airport by aircraft bringing innocent men to Guantanamo. Some of the detainees may even have come through Shannon, bound and hooded in the back of a CIA or US military plane. It is disgraceful that instead of investigating this human rights abuse - and the many other serious human rights abuses and war crimes that Shannon has facilitated - the authorities and the Fine Gael/Labour government continue to deny the evidence linking Shannon to breaches of international and national law".

Many of the prisoners in Guantanamo are now on hunger strike, and many have being brutally force-fed. The United Nations Human Rights Commission considers this practice, in which detainees are strapped to a restraining chair, have tubes pushed up their nostrils and liquids pumped down their throat, a clear form of torture.

Shannonwatch and GAAW are asking as many people as possible to join them on September 7th to highlight the injustice and cruelty of Guantanamo. The fast will run from sunrise at 6.45am to sunset at 8.00pm.If people cannot be in Shannon for the day they are invited to join in the fast wherever they are, and to contact Shannonwatch via their website to register their participation. A list of all participants and their messages of support will be forwarded to the prisoners via their lawyers.

On Sunday 8th September a regular monthly peace vigil will also take place at Shannon from 2pm to 3pm. This is a peaceful protest against the US military use of the airport, and once again members of the public are invited along to support.

Photo opportunity and press gathering to be held at 12pm at Shannon, at the airport entrance. For more information email or phone 087 8225087


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