SelfMadeHero is delighted to announce the publication of Guantanamo Kid, a personal account by Mohammed El-Gharani, one of the youngest prisoners in the notorious detention centre. A powerful, compelling true story about one of Guantánamo Bay’s youngest detainees who was no more than 14 when he left his native country, Saudi Arabia, in order to study English in Pakistan. Shortly after the 9/11 attacks, he was arrested and transferred to Guantánamo Bay. It took eight years for his innocence to be recognised. Written by journalist Jérôme Tubiana in collaboration with Mohammed El-Gharani, and drawn by Alexandre Franc, Guantanamo Kidis an important and deeply moving graphic novel that has been endorsed by Amnesty International.
Mohammed El-Gharani was no more than 14 when he left his native country, Saudi Arabia, in order to study English in Pakistan. Shortly after the 9/11 attacks, he was seized by Pakistani soldiers outside his local mosque and then handed over to the US army. Accused of being an al-Qaida member with links to Osama Bin Laden, he was flown first to Afghanistan and then to Guantánamo Bay.
El-Gharani was one of the youngest prisoners in Guantánamo Bay, and one of the few black detainees of African descent. He was racially abused and, although only a child, subjected to the same physical attacks as his fellow prisoners. During his imprisonment, he became close friends with Shaker Aamer, the last British detainee to be released from the camp. Mohammed was held for eight years without charge or trial before lawyers from the human rights group Reprieve secured his release in 2009.
Written in collaboration with Mohammed El-Gharani, Guantánamo Kid reflects as closely as possible his memories and experiences of life in the camp, and of the obstacles that confronted him upon his release. It is written by journalist and researcher Jérôme Tubiana, who first met Mohammed in 2011; they met every afternoon for two weeks, after which Tubiana turned their conversations into a diary piece for the London Review of Books. He worked closely with illustrator Alexandre Franc, the creator of Agatha: The Real Life of Agatha Christie, among other books. Guantánamo Kid has been endorsed by Amnesty International UK.
About the authors-
Jérôme Tubiana is a journalist and researcher. He has contributed to National Geographic and Foreign Affairs, among other publications. He has worked for various NGOs, think tanks and humanitarian organisations, including the International Crisis Group, Action Against Hunger and the United States Institute of Peace. He lives in Paris.
Alexandre Franc is a comic book artist and writer. His books include Agatha: The Real Life of Agatha Christie (with Anne Martinetti and Guillaume Lebeau). He lives in Paris.
Publication date: 1st March
168pp, B&W; Paperback with flaps; RRP £14.99