ICRC links Yemeni Gitmo detainees to families using video

29th December 2010, Comments 0 comments

Four families in Yemen have been able to see through video link their relatives detained in Guantanamo Bay for the first time, the International Red Cross said Wednesday, adding that it hoped to expand the service.

"It went extremely well, and definitely, this is something we want to repeat," Dorothea Krimitsas, spokeswoman of the International Committee of the Red Cross, told AFP.

The ICRC had ran the first round of calls in Sanaa on December 17 while the second round was completed this week in Aden.

"The video calls, which can last up to one hour, give the detainees and their families the opportunity not only to speak but also to see each other, in some cases for the first time in almost a decade," said the ICRC.

In all, 90 Yemenis are detained in the US prison at Guantanamo Bay, and many have been in touch with their families through messages forwarded by the ICRC and telephone calls.

"Nothing -- not even live video -- can replace a face-to-face visit, but a video call is considerably more satisfying than a phone call or written message," noted Nourane Houas of the ICRC's Sanaa delegation.

© 2010 AFP

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