June 26, 2013: Day 140 International Day in Support of Victims of Torture in Summary

Protesting Guantanamo June 23, 2013The following report on the international day of action June 23, 2013 was compiled by Witness Against Torture.

Saratoga Springs, New York — Veterans for Peace member Joe Kulin, who served in the military from 1962 to 1964, led “prisoners” throughout downtown Saratoga Springs Wednesday as part of a protest calling for the closing of the Guantanamo Bay prison camp.



Portland, Oregon  The Portland group including solidarity long-term faster, S. Brian Willson have been holding vigils outside Portland City Hall during rush hour. On June 26 they performed force-feeding street theatre. Videos can be viewed here provided from Jacob Dean through Filter Free Radio.

Vid 1 |Vid 2 | Vid 3 | Vid 4 
Photo by Mary Dean
Chicago — Outside of Obama’s house, the Chicago Coalition to Shut Down Guantanamo where a man repeatedly drove by pointing a finger gun and yelling such rhetoric as, “They should all die." Later in the evening members of Witness Against Torture joined Amnesty International for a summer concert on human rights with a table on Guantanamo and a projection of actions from WAT. Attendees enjoyed music, spoken word, wrote letters to detainees and signed a solidarity wall. The crowd also learned Hunger Strike Song from the Peace Poets. Photos of the concert from Palina Prasasouk here

In addition to Wednesdays action the Chicago Coalition to Shut Down Guantanamo also held protests on Saturday on Michigan Ave. Photos courtesy of FJJ.



London Guantanamo Campaign 
Two rallies were held in London’s Trafalgar Square on 26 June to mark International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, one by the Baluch community and one by the LGC. More photos here and here. LGC newsletter.


Photo by Steve Rhoads
San Francisco — Codepink


Photo by Matthew Daloisio
Washington DC —  Activists from the CloseGitmo.net alliance which includes, Veterans For Peace, Code Pink, and Witness Against Torture, etc… gathered in front of the White House with the names of the 86 detainees cleared for release.
Among them are solidarity hunger striker, former Army medic, member of VFP and co-founder of Codepink on her 57th day of fast. Tighe Barry of Codepink performs a force-feeding to create a diversion, with the help of two other protesters she climbs onto the other side of the fence. She then lays down on the ground to show she is not a threat and then taken into custody. She broke her fast on the following day. Twenty-three other protesters were arrested in front of The White House. Solidarity hunger striker, Elliott Adams and Code Pink Co-founder, Medea Benjamin were also detainees and later released.
Photos courtesy of: 
Diane climbing the fence. Video courtesy of Telesur. 
Arrests at The White House by Bill Hughes and interviews.
Videos from Popular Resistance 
Photo courtesy of Charles Deharapak. 86 names of the cleared for release on The White House lawn.
In addition to protests and vigils the city of Northhampton passes resolution condemning Guantanamo Bay.
"The City of Northampton went on record to oppose the continued operation of the prison at Guantanamo Bay. In the final reading of the “Resolution Calling for Justice in Guantánamo Bay”, the City Council voted 7-1 that it “opposes the continued existence of the Guantánamo Bay detention center and the violation of rule of law that it represents, and calls for all its prisoners to be charged or released.”
Please contact Jeff Napolitano (AFSC of Western Mass.) or Nancy Talanian of No More Guantanamos if your local group wants to ask your city council or town meeting to pass such a resolution.
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The resolution was introduced by Councilor Owen Freeman-Daniels, and in part written by the American Friends Service Committee and local activist Nancy Talanian, a founder of the “No More Gitmos” group.

Originally introduced on Thursday, June 20, the resolution was spoken of by Northampton resident Paki Wieland. On Tuesday, Ms. Wieland was arrested in Washington D.C. at a broad act of civil disobedience protesting the continued existence of the prison. Ms. Wieland concurred with City Councilor President Bill Dwight’s description of the facility as an “obscenity” that stains the character of the United States.

This article originally appeared on witnesstorture.tumblr.com on July 1, 2013.

Main Reports on Protest & Resistance June 26, 2013: Day 140 International Day in Support of Victims of Torture in Summary


World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.