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Mos Def Speaks Out Against Gitmo Force-Feeding By Undergoing Procedure

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Mos Def in 2011. (Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images for VEVO)

Mos Def in 2011. (Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images for VEVO)

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Rapper and activist Mos Def, who adopted his Muslim name Yasiin Bey in 2011, is drawing attention to the brutal force-feeding practices used on detainees at Guantanamo Bay by undergoing the procedure himself.

In a new video released by The Guardian in collaboration with human rights organization Reprieve, we see a medical team strap Bey to a chair and insert a feeding tube into his nostril. The procedure that follows is even more stomach-turning, so be warned, the video is quite disturbing.

The orange jumpsuit-clad rapper breaks down in tears after the procedure and explains that, “it [felt] like something’s going into my brain.”

The clip states that a group of 120 detainees at Guantanamo are currently on hunger strike to protest their confinement and conditions, and 44 of them are force-fed twice daily. The strike began earlier this year, with the brutal nature of the feeding procedure being brought to light when a detainee penned an op-ed for the New York Times.

As Pitchfork points out, while the U.S. government has rejected motions to stop the practice during the month of Ramadan, which begins tonight, they will comply with religious guidelines that require fasting during the daylight hours.

Amidst his human rights activism and political protestation, Bey is still releasing music. He put out a remix album of his 2009 effort The Ecstatic, last month, and will hit the road later this month for a string of Canadian tour dates.

- Nee-Sa Lossing, Radio.com

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