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Hicks says Guantanamo conditions worse after detainee suicides

[JURIST] David Hicks [JURIST news archive], the Australian-born terror suspect held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive], told family members that conditions at the detention center have worsened in the wake of three detainee suicides [JURIST report] in June, Hicks' lawyer David McLeod said Thursday. Hicks told family members that Guantanamo guards have become "very tough" and that he thinks that the guards are punishing other inmates for the three suicides. Hicks also claimed that he has been held in solitary confinement for 24 hours a day, without furniture in the concrete cell.

Additionally, Hicks apparently did not learn of the recent US Supreme Court [official website] ruling declaring military commissions for Guantanamo detainees illegal [JURIST report; opinion, PDF] as constituted, nor did Hicks learn of a British High Court decision to entitling him to British citizenship [JURIST report] because Hicks' mother is a UK citizen. Hicks was one of ten Guantanamo detainees awaiting trial by the military commissions [JURIST news archive], and the status of a future trial for Hicks is still unknown. Australian Prime Minister John Howard [official website] thinks that Hicks should stand trial in American courts [JURIST report], while Hicks' Pentagon appointed military lawyer, Maj. Michael Mori, has stated that any future trial for Hicks would constitute double jeopardy [JURIST report] under the Fifth Amendment. From the UK, the Guardian has more.

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