The government's failure to secure the release of the last British resident in Guantanamo is in breach of both the Magna Carta and the Act of Habeas Corpus, campaigners have declared.
As Parliament resumes today the Save Shaker Aamer Campaign (SSAC) will stage a protest demanding justice for the former Battersea resident who has spent 10 years in US detention without charge or trial.
Campaigners will wear orange boiler suits, black hoods and chains to symbolise the uniform of Guantanamo detainees and will display the text of Articles 39 and 40 of the Magna Carta, which was signed 800 years ago this week, and habeas - the foundation stones of British justice.
Article 39 states: "No free man shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possessions, or outlawed or exiled or deprived of his standing in any way nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgement of his equals or by the law of the land." Article 40 adds: "To no-one will we sell, to no-one deny or delay right or justice."
Habeas corpus, the requirement to bring a prisoner before a court, is an integral part of the British justice system.
Mr Aamer, a Saudi national with British residency, was renditioned to Guantamo, via Bagram, in 2001 with the alleged complicity of the British security services.
It is alleged that he has suffered horrific abuse and torture and spent long periods in solitary confinement. His lawyers say that his physical and mental health have suffered as a result, leading to fears that he may die if not freed soon.
The government has repeatedly claimed that it is doing all it can to secure Aamer's release but the SSAC have said that in recent correspondence the Foreign and Commonwealth Office "we have been told that, as Mr Aamer is a national of Saudi Arabia, 'the US government has advised that we are unable to conduct consular visits to non-British nationals within the Guantanamo detention facility.'"
In an open letter to David Cameron, Ray Silk of SSAC called on the Prime Minister to demand Mr Aamer's release.
"Shaker Aamer has been denied even the basic right of habeas corpus which is fundamental to both UK and US common law. Habeas corpus is universally recognised as protection against the injustice of indefinite detention without charge," he writes.
"English common law has also been based on Magna Carta - signed at Runneymede nearly 800 ago this week. We call on you to act in accordance with Articles 39 and 40 and stand up for justice for Shaker Aamer.
"Shaker is a British resident and Shaker's wife and children are British citizens, whose rights to family life are established in common and international law."
The protest will take place today from 1.00pm to 3.30pm opposite the Houses of Parliament.
If you appreciated this article then please consider donating to the Morning Star's Fighting Fund to ensure we can keep developing your paper.
Nothing will bring back the hundreds of British soldiers killed fighting in Iraq at Tony Blair's behest.
Under a modicum of scrutiny the PM's international 'achievements' quickly unravel
The Con-Dems have had it their way too long. We have to turn this country around