Obama Halts Gitmo Transfers to Yemen

Insists He Still Intends to Close Detention Center

President Barack Obama today announced an immediate halt to the transfer of detainees from Guantanamo Bay back to their homes in Yemen, a transfer which could return 91 of the prison’s 200 remaining detainees to the state of legal limbo they have found themselves in for years.

The president cited the ongoing conflicts in Yemen as a reason for the halt. The US is said to be planning additional attacks into Yemen, but the timing of those attacks has yet to be determined.

On the other hand, Obama insisted the move would have no effect on his already-broken promise to close the detention center, insisting that it was in America’s national security interests to close it.

Instead of actually closing the facility, the administration seems interested in transplanting it, in its entirety, to Thomson, Illinois. Lack of Congressional backing has delayed this move until at least 2011, however, and Congressmen are already predicting that the failed lap bomber attack could be justification for abandoning plans to close it entirely.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.