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Yemenis demand release of Guantanamo detainees

  • Relatives of Yemeni inmates held at Guantanamo Bay hold up their portraits during a protest to demand their release, outside the U.S. embassy in Sanaa April 1, 2013. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah

SANAA: Around 250 Yemenis have held a protest outside the U.S. Embassy in the capital Sanaa to demand the release of around 90 of their compatriots from Guantanamo Bay.

Yemenis make up the largest contingent of the 166 detainees held at the U.S. naval base in Cuba.

Most were detained in Afghanistan following the 2001 U.S. invasion.

Yemeni rights activist Abdel-Rahman Barman says conditions at the prison are "very poor" and that at least two of the men there are on hunger strike. A 32 -year-old Yemeni died in an apparent suicide last year.

Yemen's government has requested the prisoners be transferred to Sanaa.

An embassy employee was seen accepting a letter from relatives of the detainees on Monday. The embassy could not immediately be reached for comment.

 
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