Torture and Forgiveness at Guantánamo Bay: A Conversation with Mohamedou Ould Slahi


Location: Leighton Concert Hall, DeBartolo Performing Arts Center


Mohamedou Ould Slahi’s Guantánamo Diary, a first-hand account of his inhumane treatment as a prisoner at the Guantánamo Bay detention center, created a sensation when it was published in January 2015. Though heavily redacted by government censors, Slahi’s story of enduring humanity in the face of extreme hatred and suffering raised the level of discourse concerning our use of torture, approaches to addressing terrorism, and Muslim identity.

After more than 14 years of imprisonment, Slahi was released from Guantánamo Bay and is residing in his native Mauritania. The Center for Civil and Human Rights is now organizing a videoconference with Slahi on the occasion of the publication of the restored edition of his memoir, allowing the Notre Dame community to engage with him live. The event will also include expert discussants Larry Siems, the editor of Guantánamo Diary, and Juan Méndez, current UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and former CCHR Director. The event will be moderated by Christine Cervenak, Associate Director of the Center for Civil and Human Rights. Related events across campus are also planned.

Envisioned as a campus-wide engagement with the themes of Guantánamo Diary, students, faculty and others are encouraged to read the memoir prior to the event. If your department or group is interested in participating by purchasing and distributing copies of Guantánamo Diary to your student constituents, please contact Christine Cervenak at


A Conversation with Mohamedou Ould Slahi is presented by the Center for Civil and Human Rights, and is co-sponsored by the Center for Social Concerns, the Department of Film, Television and Theatre, the University Merit Scholarship Programs, the Global Policy Initiative of the Keough School of Global Affairs, and the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies. Presented in partnership with the Notre Dame Forum.

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