The protesters, some of whom were clad in orange jumpsuits and black hoods reminiscent of those worn by Gitmo prisoners, held an interfaith rally before marching through downtown D.C. to the Department of Justice.
“These detainees have endured cruel and unethical treatment that should weigh heavy on the minds and consciences” of U.S. policy makers, said Zainab Chaudry, a representative from the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
Andy Worthington, a London-based journalist, said that Guantanamo “is a legal, moral and ethical abomination.”
“Every day that Guantanamo is open it is a stain on the reputation of the United States for justice and fairness,” he said.
Guantanamo was opened under former President George W. Bush in 2002 to detain "extraordinarily dangerous persons" in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
President Barack Obama pledged to close the facility upon taking office in 2008, but has run up against a confrontational Congress that has opposed sending detainees to the U.S., including for trial, and has placed restrictions on transferring them to other countries.
127 inmates remain at the facility.