US trans­fers six Guan­tanamo de­tainees to Oman

The China Post - - INTERNATIONAL -

Wash­ing­ton has trans­ferred six in­mates from its Guan­tanamo Bay pri­son to Oman, the Pen­tagon said Satur­day, as part of a drive by Pres­i­dent Barack Obama to close the con­tro­ver­sial jail.

“The United States is grate­ful to the gov­ern­ment of Oman for its hu­man­i­tar­ian ges­ture and will­ing­ness to sup­port on­go­ing U.S. ef­forts to close the Guan­tanamo Bay detention fa­cil­ity,” a state­ment said.

It named the six men as Idris Ah­mad Abd Al Qadir Idris, Sharaf Ah­mad Muham­mad Ma­sud, Jalal Salam Awad Awad, Saad Nasser Mo­q­bil Al Azani, Emad Ab­dal­lah Has­san and Muham­mad Ali Salem Al Zar­nuki.

The Omani for­eign min­istry said all six were Ye­meni.

They ar­rived in the sul­tanate on Satur­day for a “tem­po­rary stay,” said a min­istry state­ment car­ried by the of­fi­cial ONA news agency. It did not elab­o­rate on their sub­se­quent travel plans.

The trans­fer means 116 in­mates re­main at the pri­son in at a U.S. naval base in south­east­ern Cuba.

Satur­day’s an­nounce­ment marked the sec­ond Guan­tanamo prisoner trans­fer this year, af­ter the Pen­tagon an­nounced in Jan­uary that is had moved four men to Oman and one to Es­to­nia.

A to­tal 28 in­mates were trans- ferred out of Guan­tanamo in 2014.

Thwarted by Congress in his ef­fort to close the pri­son, Obama has had to rely on a hand­ful of coun­tries that have agreed to ac­cept de­tainees.

The pri­son was set up to hold al­leged ter­ror sus­pects af­ter the Sept. 11, 2001 at­tacks. But hu­man rights groups have con­demned the jail as a “legal black hole,” where in­mates lan­guish for years with­out be­ing tried in court.

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