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Letters to the Editor
APA President Pedro Ruiz, M.D., responds:
Psychiatric News
Volume 42 Number 10 page 46-46

I welcome the opportunity to respond to Dr. Fleming's letter. In the president's column that he cites, I made it clear that my intention was to" recognize and support the health care personnel—psychiatrists, other physicians, nurses, psychologists, and others—stationed at GTMO."

The issues that Dr. Fleming raises are relevant and important. The media have addressed them extensively in this country and abroad. The health care personnel, especially psychiatrists, have not been recognized enough or at all. As APA president, I thought that it was important to pay respect to our APA members—and, for that matter, other health care personnel—who are assigned to or served at GTMO.

Having said that, from a personal perspective I want to underscore that I fully endorse and support the position taken by APA last year against psychiatrists' participation in interrogation of detainees at GTMO or in any other place. I am also against the operation of GTMO and violations of human rights anywhere in the world. Additionally, I oppose the military occupation of any country by any government without demonstrated evidence of the need.

As Psychiatric News readers can see by my response, I am not afraid to address the political, legal, and ethical issues pertaining to GTMO. Personally, I fully share Dr. Fleming's views on this matter. However, as APA president, the well-being of even one APA member is as important to me as any political ideology, including my own.

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