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Most Guantanamo detainees low-level fighters, task force report says

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Peter Finn
Washington Post
May 29, 2010

About 10 percent of the 240 detainees held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, when President Obama took office were “leaders, operatives and facilitators involved in plots against the United States,” but the majority were low-level fighters, according to a previously undisclosed government report. About 5 percent of the detainees could not be categorized at all.

The final report by the Guantanamo Review Task Force recommends that 126 of the detainees be transferred either to their homes or to a third country; that 36 be prosecuted in either federal court or a military commission; and that 48 be held indefinitely under the laws of war. A group of 30 Yemenis was approved for release if security conditions in their home country improve.

The report was completed in January but sent to select committees on Capitol Hill just this week. The administration sat on the report in the wake of the attempted bombing of a Detroit-bound airliner on Christmas Day because there was little public or congressional appetite for further discussion of its plan to close the military detention center.

The figures are in line with previous estimates, but the report, a copy of which was obtained by The Washington Post, could have important political implications. There is deepening bipartisan congressional opposition to the closure of Guantanamo, and the administration is attempting to show that it has conducted a rigorous review process and been attentive to security risks.

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This article was posted: Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 6:04 am





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