Guantanamo Bay Lease Agreement

22 septembre 2021 - 3 minutes read

The naval base, nicknamed « GTMO » or « Gitmo, » spans 116 square kilometers (45 square miles) on the west and east shores of the bay. It was created in 1898, when the United States took control of Cuba from Spain after the Spanish-American War. The newly created U.S. protectorate added the Platt Amendment to the Cuban constitution of 1901. Tomás Estrada Palma, Cuba`s first president, proposed on February 23, 1903, an indefinite lease for the Guantanamo Bay area. The Cuban-American Treaty of Relations of 1903 established, inter alia, that the United States has « complete jurisdiction and control » over Guantánamo Bay for the operation of coal and marine stations, while recognizing that the Republic of Cuba retains ultimate sovereignty. [7] Arguing that this « goes against » American values, President Barack Obama signed an order to close the detention center in 2009 during his first days in office. Nearly 200 prisoners have been released to their countries of origin or relocated elsewhere. The history of territories leased between States shows that a restoration of control by the host State, when a lease ends, leads the host State to reintroduce the exercise of its sovereign authority, including legal jurisdiction, over any and all persons physically present in the territory at the time of the transfer. Parties to a territorial lease sometimes negotiate « cancellation agreements » dealing with practical issues or other conditions related to the delegation of control50, which may affect the legal treatment of persons in the territory, including those in prison. This is the case, for example, with the expiry of the Hong Kong lease by the United Kingdom of China in 1997. More than a decade earlier, the parties agreed that Hong Kong`s existing laws would still apply 50 years after China regained control.51 Alfred-Maurice de Zayas argued that the 1903 lease was imposed on Cuba under duress and that a contract between inequalities that is no longer compatible with modern international law and ex nunc is questionable. It makes six proposals for a peaceful solution, including through the procedure of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.

[13] For its part, the United States has argued that the lease remains valid as a bilateral agreement under international law, which creates an obligation of compliance for Cuba, and that, on this basis, the continued U.S. presence at Guantanamo Bay is legal.16 Unlike most leases, it has no deadline. == The army can use the site for an indefinite period. This lease shall be subject to all the conditions referred to in Article II of this Agreement. . . .