with request for inclusion in the agenda for the debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 115 of the Rules of Procedure
by Sarah Ludford, Cecilia Malmström and Sajjad Karim,
on behalf of the ALDE Group
NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.
European Parliament resolution on Guantanamo
The European Parliament,
having regard to its previous resolution on Guantanamo adopted on 7 February 2002
having regard to its Report with a proposal for a European Parliament recommendation to the Council on the Guantanamo detainees' right to a fair trial - adopted on 27 February 2004
having regard to the Geneva Convention concerning to the treatment of prisoners of war, adopted on 12 August 1949,
having regard to its resolutions of 15 December 2005 and 18 January 2006 on alleged use of European countries by the CIA for the transportation and illegal detention of prisoners, which set up a temporary committee of the European Parliament to investigate the allegations in the light of human rights obligations,
having regard to the European Parliament decision of 18 January 2006 setting up a temporary committee on the alleged use of European countries by the CIA for the transportation and illegal detention of prisoners
having regard to The Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or degrading Treatment or Punishment as adopted by the by the UN General Assembly in December 1984
whereas the detention of so-called “enemy combatants” at the US Naval Base at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba has now entered its fifth year, with their lives and the lives of their families devastated;
whereas hundreds of people of around 35 different nationalities remain held in effect in a legal lacuna, many without access to any court, legal counsel or family visit;.
whereas 9 men are still held even though they have been determined to be no longer 'enemy combatants' and the US authorities at Guantanamo have decided they should be released, and a District Court has ruled in respect of 2 of them that their continued detention is unlawful;
whereas EU Institutions, Member States and public opinion are concerned about conditions at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base and about the physical and mental states of the detainees and have called for the prisoners to be treated according to 'the rule of law', regardless of their nationality or origin; whereas a hunger strike in protest against continued imprisonment has been broken by force-feeding;
whereas EU Institutions, Member States and public opinions are concerned about conditions at Guantanamo Bay and about the physical and mental states of the detainees and have called for the prisoners to be treated according to the rule of law, regardless of their nationality or origin;
whereas the military commissions established under the Military Order on the Detention, Treatment, and Trial of Certain Non-citizens in the War against Terrorism violate international fair trial standards, including: a lack of independence from the executive; admission of secret evidence which is withheld from the defendant; admission of statements obtained through torture or ill-treatment; discrimination based on nationality; curtailment of the right of appeal to an independent and impartial tribunal; restrictions on right to counsel of choice;
whereas there are alleged to be thousands more illegally detained US or US-sponsored prisoners scattered round the globe about whom even less is known than those at Guantanamo,
recalling that nine detainees from Guantánamo Bay remain subject to the US presidential order and are scheduled to be tried by military commission;
Recalling that under customary international law, children affected by armed conflict are entitled to special respect and protection, according to their age. The arrest, detention or imprisonment of a child should be used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest appropriate period of time and children who are deprived of their liberty must be held in quarters separate from those of adults.
Reiterates once more that the fight against terrorism, which is one of the priorities of the Union and a key part of its external action, can only be successfully prosecuted if human rights and civil liberties are fully respected;
Shares the view that the transatlantic relationship is invaluable and irreplaceable and could be a formidable force for good in the world as stated by the European Council only if basic human rights - such as the right to fair trial and the prohibition on arbitrary detention - are clearly respected as universal and non-negotiable and remain the core of values and common interest that the EU and the US maintain;
Recalls that security is an all-encompassing collective concept that requires a multilateral approach, and that international treaties are the basic elements upon which the foundation of such a multilateral framework for human security and a renewed transatlantic partnership must be laid;
Calls upon the US to comply fully with its obligations under international human rights and humanitarian law with respect to proper determination of the status of combatants, abolishing the death penalty, and safeguarding the treatment of prisoners of war in the wake of the recent conflicts;
Calls upon the US to comply with its obligations under The Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment as adopted by the UN General Assembly in December 1984, art. 3, which prohibits the expelling, return ("refoulement") or extradition of a person to countries where there are substantial grounds for believing he or she would be subjected to torture;
Calls on the US authorities to:
Scrap the military commissions and try any remaining accused in courts that meet international fair standards; release all other Guantánamo detainees, unless they are to be given fair trials in US courts in accordance with international law and without recourse to the death penalty;
Close the Guantánamo detention facility and open up all US ‘war on terror’ detention facilities to external independent scrutiny;
Promptly, impartially and effectively investigate all allegations of torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of detainees in Guantánamo and in US-sponsored custody elsewhere;
Ensure that all the Guantánamo detainees are allowed adequate contact with their families, consulates and the Red Cross/Crescent and necessary access to medical and psychological treatment;
Ensure that all juveniles have proper access to a parent, guardian or legal representative and where evidence was obtained in the absence of such a representative, it should be inadmissible in a court of law.
Ensure that attempts are made to offer education and rehabilitation to all those released from Guantánamo and US custody elsewhere
Set up an independent commission of inquiry into all aspects of the USA’s "war on terror" detention policies and practices;
Provide a full list of all those detained by the US as part of the ‘war on terror’ in Guantánamo and elsewhere;
Cease the illegal practices of abduction, extraordinary rendition and 'ghost detainees',
Reiterate its call for the Council Presidency to insist with the US authorities on the right of prisoners detained at Guantánamo Bay and other sites to a fair trial or release, and to include this issue on the agenda for the next summit between the European Union and the United States;
Demands that the EU and Member States take responsibility for the long-term legal residents as well as citizens of EU states who are illegally detained, including guaranteeing their continuing right of residence under appropriate conditions;
Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the US Government, the US Congress and the United Nations.