MOCK TRIAL IN ADELAIDE
David Hicks, the South Australian detained at Guantanamo Bay, should be assessed by an Australian psychiatrist, according to his father, Mr Terry Hicks. Mr Hicks said a letter from his son indicated that he was not in an environment where he could make proper decisions. Mr Hicks added, the decisions David was making would be used during his trial.
The letter reveals part of David Hicks torture included chaining him to the floor and placing him four centimetres below a strobe light. The Fair Go for David Committee has commented on the matter, saying it is yet another violation of human rights.
In protest at the way the American administration has handled David's matter, Fair Go for David has organised a meeting on the steps of Parliament House, Adelaide, on Monday 1st November, at 5.00pm. A mock trial will take place there with "David Hicks" and politicians Frances Bedford (ALP), Linda Kirk (ALP), Sandra Kanck (Democrats) and Brian Noone (Greens) will be tried by a military judge. Mr Terry Hicks will also read the entire contents of David's letter, written in August but which arrived in mid - October, 2004.
Fair Go for David has labelled the military trial a "sham."
Mr Hicks said, "My son spends 360 hours at a time completely on his own in solitary confinement, he is in a prison where dobbing others in for added benefits is encouraged, a gag exists on much of the information David's lawyers have, while the military is getting quite a lot of information out to the public which is fairly one sided."
"Recent, valid, legal challenges have left a military judge and two members on the military tribunal which is to hear David's matter, and the American government will not replace the three tribunal members who were dismissed. The American government has shifted the goal post to suit itself again. This is the sort of uphill battle we have been facing." Asked if he thought the situation at Guantanamo Bay established a dangerous precedent, he said, " Yes, it has."
"It has established a dangerous standard for other people in Australia in that if you happen not to like Joe Bloggs next door, you could say I saw him at the pub and the authorities could take him away and interrogate him. Next they will get the Gestapo in," he said.
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Media release written by Tasia Pertsinidis on behalf of Fair Go for David