The Sudden Silencing of Guantanamo's Artists

Khalid Qasim recently received some news for which he had waited 20 years. His release from the Guantanamo Bay jail had been approved.

Qasim has produced a large number of intricate paintings and other works of art throughout his long detention, but he would have to leave them behind.

Qasim said that keeping his artwork at Guantanamo would be "the same as keeping me here." "The art I made is me," he said. "If they keep my art here, my soul will stay here."

Before, things were different. Up until the end of 2017, detainees at Guantanamo were free to take their artwork with them upon release or leave it in the care of their attorneys.

Later, it became evident that art was no longer being released under the Trump administration in late 2017. There was no official communication or notification to the attorneys.

One prisoner has been able to leave with his artwork since the prohibition was implemented. Ahmed al-Darbi in exchange for his co-operation testifying.

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The ban has discouraged the artists inside of Guantanamo. They feel disappointed whenever they create a new piece of art, as it will be left behind.