Shaker Aamer, a Saudi citizen and British resident released from Guantanamo Bay after 14 years imprisonment, was interviewed by Russia Today TV on January 12, 2016. Aamer said that the families of soldiers serving in Guantanamo should "call their kids back." "Tell them: 'No, I don't want you to be in that horrible place'," he said.
Following are excerpts:
Interviewer: Shaker Aamer, it is an absolute pleasure and a privilege to finally meet you and to see you freed from Guantanamo Bay. This also falls on the commemoration of the fourteenth anniversary of the opening of Guantanamo Bay and of course, you have been incarcerated for fourteen years. You have been released, literally, just weeks before this fourteen year anniversary, yet it remains open.
Shaker Aamer: First of all, we have to understand that Guantanamo has been opened under one concept: How to destroy a human being? A lot of people – they don't understand – Guantanamo is not a detention facility, it is not a jail like a normal jail – it is not. It is not run by an administration of army or military. Guantanamo is being run by psychologists, by psychiatrists – people who know how to manipulate. People who know what it means to be a Muslim who will suffer so many small little things on a daily basis.
The American soldiers who are working in that place are nothing but victims. I call it victims of circumstances. That's why I call upon all these families who have their kids serving as soldiers in Guantanamo to call them back. Call your kids back. Tell them: No. I don't want you to be in that horrible place. Because once these kids will refuse to work there. They won't have anybody to go there.
Aamer holds up a pair of plus sized pants
Is this something that I can wear?
Interviewer: For goodness sake, that is huge.
Shaker Aamer: This is white clothes, by the way. This is for highly compliant people. They claim these are my clothes, while you could see these are brand new clothes that have been shoved in my back to tell the world….
Interviewer: I mean that is still stiff. It's stiff….
Joanne, you have been campaigning for years to release Shaker Aamer - I believe that you saw her campaign on RT from Guantanamo – how do you feel now that he is sitting in front of you and will join your campaign?
Joanne McInnes: I am elated, sometimes I have to pinch myself when I see Shaker's name come up on my phone and he's calling me. I'm like, this is surreal.