Pentagon officials have confirmed that they are rejecting Southern Command’s (Socom’s) request for $195.7 million to rebuild a number of structures at Guantanamo Bay’s detention center, citing a lack of Congressional support for special funds for such projects.
The plan was submitted by Socom back in March, seeking nearly $150 million to renovate assorted facilities for guards that they claimed are “literally falling apart,” and another $49 million to construct a new “camp seven” for high-value detainees.
Gen. John Kelly, who oversaw the request, said that the funding was urgently needed to keep the facility open, and told Congress that while he is “assuming Guantanamo will be closed someday,” people have been telling him that for 11 years and “who knows” how much longer it will take.
While Congress spurned the funding for upgrades to the facility, they also rejected closing the facility, and have left detainees cleared for release in legal limbo. Though President Obama promised to close the prison in 2009, there is no indication that it will happen any time soon.