A new Trump administration practice is allowing detainees who peacefully protest their indefinite detention without trial to starve to death, while denying them access to medical care – even vitamins necessary to prevent brain damage.
Over the last two weeks, our supporters all over the world have been fasting for 24hours, in solidarity with our hunger striking clients, Ahmed and Khalid. So far over 1000 days have now been pledged- thank you to everyone who has pledged to #FastForJustice, for this overwhelming show of support.
Last week, our founder Clive Stafford Smith had a legal call with Ahmed, and told him about the hundreds of people who were fasting for him. This is what Ahmed said:
“First I want to thank everyone who felt for me by going on hunger strike. This is really much appreciated. It makes me feel that I am not alone.”
Many of our supporters have also sent us their stories from their fast day. These are ten of our favourites:
“My 24 hour fast was the day after my 74th birthday. On my birthday I was fortunate enough to take part in a “Come and Sing” workshop and performance of the Mozart Requiem. Feeling much luckier than so many oppressed people in the world it seemed appropriate to make a small stand for justice and hope to draw attention to the plight of hunger strikers in Guantanamo Bay.”– Trevor
“I fasted because although it may be a drop in the bucket, if Clive can tell Ahmed and Khalid and the others that hundreds of people fasted to honor their struggle, that people around the world are horrified by them being denied medical treatment while they starve to death…maybe they will know they are not forgotten.” – Caroline
“A great suggestion from Reprieve! It was actually quite easy; I worked at the museum I volunteer at as usual, felt a few hunger pangs but ignored them. I did have a bit of black tea, I must confess. It struck me how appalling it must be for these poor men, doing what I did but day after day after day, in dreadful conditions and continually denied justice.” – Maxime
“Why did I choose to fast for justice? Injustice causes me to feel angry: a feeling that starts in my stomach and battles its way out and upwards towards my brain. Guantanamo’s injustices are legion, well documented and yet, you seem all but forgotten in the outside world… You are not forgotten. We know where you are and why you are still where you should not be. May you be sustained by what matters to you.”– Josie
“Simply consuming water, soda water, as well as black tea and black coffee, for a 24 hour period on Tuesday showed me how difficult it is. It underlines the determination of the hunger strikers in Guantanamo: hunger strikes can only be achieved by those who really believe in what they are doing.” – Paul
“It seems such a small thing today. One day of not eating, while people who have spent over 5,000 days in Guantanamo are given no chance to prove their innocence, and for them fasting is the only way to protest what is happening. Feeling hungry all afternoon is trivial, but at least each time I was aware of my hunger I thought of Khalid and Ahmed. And I’ll not be forgetting them.” – Alice
“I really do believe that the work that Reprieve do is life-changing and inspiring… Hearing that Ahmed has said “it makes me feel that I am not alone”, means the world to me. I can’t begin to imagine how he and the other detainees must be feeling, and to know that in taking part in the #FastForJustice, I have helped to highlight to him that he is not alone and that people care about him makes the whole experience incredibly worthwhile, and I am elated to have been a part of making him feel that way.”– Lana
“I did it to feel closer to those who are suffering. I did it because I want you to know that we are not silent, we are not indifferent, we do care, we do raise our voice, you are not and won’t be forgotten… My coworker Linda decided to fast with me as well which touched my heart. Stay strong, don’t lose hope, nothing lasts forever. Wherever we go, we bring you with us.” – Alessandra
“My fasting day was uneventful. I carried on with my normal routine. I had the luxury of knowing when my fasting would end. It was a tiny gesture on my part to show solidarity with your unending nightmare. Thanks to Clive and Reprieve your stories are spreading throughout the world. I live on a small island, 9 by 5 miles. We are shouting out about your plight in ways that you are unable to.”– Jan
“The major realisation that it was my entirely free choice to deprive myself of food: in the comfort and support of my own environment: no pressure – no external deprivations being inflicted : and it was only one day of discomfort and hunger : such a small offering in support of a huge issue”– Viviene