Saturday

18th Nov 2017

EU urged to press US on Guantanamo

Euro-parliamentarians urged EU governments yesterday (30 September) to form a united front and protest against US President George W Bush over detainees' lack of rights in the US base in Guantanamo bay, Cuba.

Hundreds of prisoners are being held in Guantanamo - 22 are EU citizens from Britain, Spain, France, Denmark, Sweden and Germany - and are being accused of having links with the al-Qaeda terrorist network in Afghanistan.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

MEPs criticised the US for human rights abuses which are leading to dozens of suicide attempts. They are demanding that these detainees have a fair trial or be released.

"Where is the united diplomatic protest by the EU to President Bush? If the EU stopped being wimpish and spoke with one strong voice we could surely have real weight to reverse the third-class justice meted out to foreigners there", UK Liberal Democrat MEP Baroness Sarah Ludford said.

Baroness Ludford criticised the fact that US citizen John Walker Lindh was dealt with in a civil court with the protection of the US Constitution, whereas the Europeans and hundreds of non-Americans are "caught in the Catch 22 between detention without charge or a military ‘kangaroo court’".

To put pressure on the US over this issue, MEPs urged EU governments to reconsider the entry into force of the extradition agreement between the EU and US until the US solves the situation in Guantanamo.

Baroness Ludford also demanded that EU states refuse to agree to a new UN resolution on Iraq until the US releases or gives fair trials to the detainees.

The Civil Liberties Committee in the European Parliament is planning to draft a recommendation for Council, demanding that EU governments push for a fair trial for the Guantanamo prisoners.

On Tuesday families and lawyers of the detainees in Guantanamo bay gave a public hearing in the European Parliament.

MEPs expressed disappointment that the EU's foreign policy chief Javier Solana did not respond to the invitation.

MEPs point finger at Malta

The European Parliament debated shady deals and rule of law in Malta after the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, while the Commission wanted to avoid a "political fight".

Austrian privacy case against Facebook hits legal snag

Austrian privacy campaigner Max Schrems may sue Facebook Ireland in an Austrian court but won't be able to pursue a class action suit in Austria, according to a non-binding opinion by a top EU court advisor.

EU Parliament 'cookie' restrictions worry online media

The European Parliament and groups representing newspapers and magazines are at odds over how new privacy rules will affect the media, especially restrictions on website cookies - but one MEP thinks it could spark new business models.

EU Commission to target fake news

Mariya Gabriel, the EU digital economy commissioner, announces expert panel and says fake news can be tackled if people are given credible and diverse information.

Malta denies secrecy in 'Paradise Papers' leak

Malta's finance minister Edward Scicluna told reporters that the Maltese-based entities named in the latest tax avoidance leaks are all listed on a public register. "There was no secrecy whatsoever," he said.

MEPs ponder how to fight tax havens

After the Paradise Papers brought new revelations about tax dodging across the globe, including in the EU, the European Parliament wonders how to step up the fight.

MEPs point finger at Malta

The European Parliament debated shady deals and rule of law in Malta after the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, while the Commission wanted to avoid a "political fight".

News in Brief

  1. Bonn climate talks extend into Friday evening
  2. UK needs to move on Brexit by early December, Tusk says
  3. Puigdemont extradition decision postponed to December
  4. Ireland wants written UK guarantees to avoid hard border
  5. US did not obstruct climate talks, says German minister
  6. EU signs social declaration
  7. Puigdemont to be heard by Belgian judges
  8. Steep fall in migrants reaching EU

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Jewish CongressAntisemitism in Europe Today: Is It Still a Threat to Free and Open Society?
  2. Counter BalanceNew Report: Juncker Plan Backs Billions in Fossil Fuels and Carbon-Heavy Infrastructure
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic countries prioritise fossil fuel subsidy reform
  4. Mission of China to the EUNew era for China brings new opportunities to all
  5. ACCASmall and Medium Sized Practices Must 'Offer the Whole Package'
  6. UNICEFAhead of the African Union - EU Summit, Survey Highlights Impact of Conflict on Education
  7. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Council Calls for Closer Co-Operation on Foreign Policy
  8. Swedish EnterprisesTrilogue Negotiations - Striking the Balance Between Transparency and Efficiency
  9. Access EuropeProspects for US-EU Relations Under the Trump Administration - 28 November 2017
  10. World Vision20 November: Exchange of Views at the EP on Children Affected by the Syria Crisis
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersSustainable Growth the Nordic Way: Climate Solutions for a Sustainable Future
  12. EU2017EEHow Data Fuels Estonia's Economy

Latest News

  1. EU keeps former Soviet states at arm's length
  2. EU leaders make pledge on social issues after populist backlash
  3. EU agencies and eastern neighbours This WEEK
  4. Germany slams Dutch call for more ambitious EU climate goal
  5. Mind the gap: inequality in our cities
  6. Climate activists 'disappointed' with EU at climate talks
  7. Davis outlines UK vision on Brexit in Berlin
  8. German coalition talks in near collapse