The United States military will likely show its benevolence toward the Guantanamo Bay detainees it's holding in perpetuity and will only force-feed the hunger strikers at night out of respect for Ramadan. Currently 106 of the 166 detainees are on hunger strike, and 44 of them are twice daily strapped into a chair while a tube is threaded through their noses into their stomachs to prevent them from escaping detention through suicide. In a motion filed Sunday night, four men asked federal court to stop the force feeding, the Miami Herald's Carol Rosenberg explains, and judges gave the government till Wednesday at noon to respond. Ramadan starts July 8, and if the court can't decide by then, the men ask the judges "at a minimum, to enjoin any force-feeding between sunup and sundown during the month of Ramadan."
That was the plan all along, a Guantanamo spokesman told Reuters' Jane Sutton, who says the military said two weeks ago it planned to only do nighttime force feedings, as it has during past Ramadans. However, the Miami Herald reports that in previous years, there were only a few detainees being force fed at a time, and that Guantanamo spokesmen would not say whether the base was capable of following that procedure with so many detainees.