Uruguay To Accept Five Guantanamo Detainees
Washington, D.C. – Human Rights First welcomes today’s announcement that Uruguay has agreed to accept five Guantanamo Bay detainees. The organization notes that the agreement between the United States and Uruguay is a positive sign that the administration will continue to make it a priority to close the detention facilities at Guantanamo Bay.
“Today’s announcement is a step in the right direction as the Obama Administration works to bring the number of Guantanamo detainees down to zero by the end of the year, a commitment the president made in his State of the Union address,” said Human Rights First’s Raha Wala.
There are more than 70 detainees who have long been cleared by U.S. intelligence and security agencies and should be transferred without delay. The vast majority of the other remaining detainees will face Periodic Review Board hearings—an interagency process that’s currently underway—that will assess whether the remaining men pose a significant security threat to the United States or should be cleared for transfer instead. Human Rights First calls on the administration to complete all of the Periodic Review Board hearings by the end of this year.
“In order to meet President Obama’s self-imposed deadline, the administration will need to act quickly to obtain security assurances from host nations for those detainees who have been cleared for transfer,” stated Wala. “This is a welcome development, but there is much more left to be done.”