…but no one will take the prisoners! – If Obama follows up on his promise to close Guantanamo prison in Cuba, what will he do with the detainees? 225 prisoners are still being held there, 60 of whom have already been cleared for release. The Bush administration has asked Australia to take some of them in?two times in one year?but has been refused both times.
BBC News quotes deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard as saying, “Assessing those requests from a case-by-case basis, they had not met our stringent national security and immigration criteria and have been rejected.” The State Department has asked about 100 other countries to accept prisoners as well. They want to clear Guantanamo over the next two years.
Australia was originally settled by convicted criminals from the UK, who were transported there instead of being put in jail, but the country has no desire to do this again for a new generation. The US thinks that the prisoners may be tortured even more if they are returned to their own countries.
Guantanamo prisoners have even included two Australians! One of them, Mamdouh Habib, was released in 2005 without being charged and the other, David Hicks, was released in 2007 after pleading guilty to supporting terrorism.
Art credit: freeimages.co.uk
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