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UN: United States must close Guantanamo Bay.


The United States must close Guantanamo and apologize and compensate the victims of torture committed in the prison, according to Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, the first UN expert on human rights to have been able to visit the detention center.


In a press conference in New York, Ni Aoláin stated that all the detainees she was able to see suffer from the "systematic" mistreatment and arbitrariness with which they have been treated, and they continue to suffer the consequences.


"I observed that after two decades in custody, the suffering of the detainees is profound and ongoing," said the Irish lawyer, who noted that for many of them, "the line that divides the past from the present is extremely thin."


"For some, it is simply nonexistent, and their past experiences of torture live with them in the present without any prospect of an end in sight," insisted the Special Rapporteur on the Protection of Human Rights in the Fight against Terrorism.


According to Ni Aoláin, the torture at Guantanamo has been a "betrayal" of the rights of the victims of the 9/11 attacks.


"The U.S. government must urgently provide judicial resolution, apologies, and guarantees of non-repetition," she insisted.


The U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay (Cuba) has housed a prison since 2002, which has seen nearly 800 detainees, the vast majority of whom were - at least during the early years - prisoners captured in Afghanistan.


Over time, some have been released, others have been relocated to third countries or repatriated to their home countries, and some have died in custody, while very few have faced specific charges or have been tried and found guilty.


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