US House backs Guantanamo prisoner transfer to face trial

U.S. House of Representatives voted to allow the Obama administration to bring foreign suspects from the illegal Guantanamo Bay prison to US to face trial.

US House backs Guantanamo prisoner transfer to face trial

The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday voted to allow the Obama administration to bring foreign suspects from the illegal Guantanamo Bay prison to the United States to face trial.

The 307 to 114 vote removes one of many roadblocks the administration faces as it tries to empty the internationally condemned prison by January.

The measure, which was included in a $42.8 billion bill that would fund the Homeland Security Department for the current fiscal year, must be passed by the Senate before President Barack Obama can sign it into law.

Obama ordered the controversial detention camp closed on his second day in office and gave administration officials a year to do it.

Not least among those has been Congress, even though Obama's fellow Democrats control both the House and the Senate.

But many lawmakers have objected to administration plans to house suspects in U.S. prisons, worrying that they could threaten "security", inviting allegedly further attacks.

Congress has on several occasions denied the administration the money it needs to shut down the facility until it presents a detailed plan.

The compromise passed by the House would allow administration officials to bring Guantanamo detainees to U.S. soil only if they are going to face trial in U.S. courts.

The administration would have to present a risk assessment and give 14 days' notice beforehand.

Roughly 220 detainees remain in the facility, which was opened after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

The bill would also allow the Pentagon to block the release of photos showing the torture of suspects, which have figured prominently in several scandals.


Reuters
Last Mod: 16 Ekim 2009, 08:28
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