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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Guantánamo and Its Aftermath: U.S. Detention and Interrogation Practices and Their Impact on Former Detainees

  • Author(s): Stover, Eric
  • Fletcher, Laurel
  • et al.

This report, conducted by the Human Rights Center and International Human Rights Law Clinic, in partnership with the Center for Constitutional Rights, provides the findings of a study of former detainees who were held in U.S. custody in Afghanistan and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. The primary objective of the study was to record the experiences of these men, assess their treatment in detention, and explore how the conditions of their incarceration affected their subsequent reintegration with their families and communities.

Using semi-structured questionnaires, researchers interviewed 112 people from July 2007 to July 2008. Of these, 62 were former detainees residing in nine countries who had been held in U.S. custody without trial for just over three years on average. Another 50 respondents were key informants, including former and current U.S. government officials, representatives of nongovernmental organizations, attorneys representing detainees, and former U.S. military and civilian personnel who had been stationed in Guantánamo or at detention facilities in Afghanistan. Researchers compared this interview data to 1,215 coded media reports about former Guantánamo detainees, relevant documents released by the Department of Defense, and reports by the U.S. government, independent organizations, and the media.

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