The area which is called Guantanamo Bay is being used as a temporary detention centre called Camp X-Ray, Guantanamo Bay is an isolated US outpost on the edge of Fidel Castro's Cuba. The people being held are the Taleban and al-Qaeda prisoners flown from Afghanistan to an American naval base in the Caribbean. The conditions are said to be tough yet humane.

The prisoners are being housed in cells measuring 1.8 by 2.4 metres (six feet by eight feet) with open, chain-link walls, a concrete floor and wooden roof. The cells have concrete floors, wooden roofs and wire mesh walls. Prisoners have a foam mat to sleep on, two towels, one for washing, the other to use as a prayer mat, and some form of chamber pot. Prisoners will wear standard orange jumpsuits at all times. They will spend most of their time separated, although they will be allowed out of their cells in small groups for meals, showers and some recreation. They will be allowed to pray according to their faith.

The aim of this camp is to obtain information on the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden. The US Administration is holding them as unlawful combatants and at this time they have Geneva Convention rights but this is being fiercly contended.

There is little chance of escape as the base is surrounded by mangrove swamps, salt marshes and dense bush and the sea is shark-infested. The camp perimeters, lit up at night, has watchtowers and two fences topped with razor wire constantly patrolled by heavily armed marines. At night the camp is lit up with halogen floodlights.

American marines landed in Guantanamo during the Spanish-American war in 1898, and the base was established under a 1903 treaty. After Fidel Castro led the Communists to power in Cuba in 1959, then US President Dwight Eisenhower refused to relinquish the base despite strong objections from Havana.

The US in fact leases the base for a little more then was indicated above, set 100 years ago at 2,000 gold coins a year, and now worth about $4,000, it is also known what Mr Castro does with the money; he refuses to cash the cheques.

Some information taken from: also thanks to yesno for clearing up some details for me