Not finding the orange jumpsuits and human rights violations sufficiently stimulating, the high-profile inmates at Guantanamo Bay have found an unexpected exhilaration in literature.

According to military officials at the US naval base, 50 Shades of Grey is the most popular novel in the prison library.

The information comes from Virginia State Representative Jim Moran, who informed The Huffington Post of the officials’ statements following a congressional delegation’s visit.

“These guys are going nowhere, so what the hell”, Mr Moran said on Monday. “Apparently they’d been offered the Koran, but preferred 50 Shades”.

The comments were made to a group of state representatives who visited the secretive Camp 7, a high-security penitentiary reserved for the CIA’s “high-value detainees”, guided by the base commander.

Guantanamo Bay officials later refused to comment on the statements. “We do not discuss assertions made by members of Congress” said Lieutenant Colonal Samuel House, a spokesman for the US naval base.

According to Mr Moran, the officials had offered to translate E.L. James’ popular erotic novel into their charges’ native languages, but many of the inmates had already “read the entire series in English”.

It recently came to light that the Harry Potter series is the preferred reading material of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the September 11 mastermind and detainee at the Guantanamo bay base.

Guantanamo Bay has a library of books and DVDs for the use of its inmates, although material with explicit sexual content is screened. Librarians at the base have gone as far as to black out photos of under-dressed women in magazines.

Mr Moran is in favour of the closure of the Guantanamo Bay US naval base.

Despite having pledged to work towards the closure of Guantanamo Bay, it is unlikely that President Obama will achieve this goal before the end of his term as president in 2016.

The official visit was to the controversial Camp 7, also known as ‘Camp Platinum’, the existence of which was kept secret for the first two years of its existence. The camp holds less than twenty CIA detainees, five of whom are charged with having plotted the September 11th attacks upon New York in 2001.

50 Shades of Grey is the best-selling book of all time in Britain, surpassing Harry Potter with sales of 5.3 million copies.


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Alasdair Baverstock MA is an award-winning multimedia foreign correspondent based in Mexico City, with more than five years of experience covering Latin America. Originally from London, and with full NCTJ certification, he specialises in news and feature journalism for print, radio and television. His work has previously been used as set-texts in British A-Level examinations. He currently works as CGTN America's Mexico correspondent, and has formerly published work in TIME Magazine, Daily Mail, The Atlantic, Penthouse, Fox News, BBC, Daily Telegraph, TRT World, and others.


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