The U.S. Pentagon on Friday transferred six Yemeni detainees, long-cleared for release, from the Guantanamo Bay Detention Center, leaving 116 to await their unknown fate.
Idris Ahmad ‘Abd Al Qadir Idris, Sharaf Ahmad Muhammad Mas’ud, Jalal Salam Awad Awad, Saa’d Nasser Moqbil Al Azani, Emad Abdallah Hassan, and Muhammad Ali Salem Al Zarnuki were all sent to Oman from the military prison in Cuba for resettlement, according to a government statement issued Saturday.
"All six had been cleared for release for at least five years. None was ever charged with a crime. All were taken to the prison camps in the summer of 2002," the Miami Herald's Carol Rosenberg, who has closely followed the Guantanamo trials, reports.
Hassan, who was among those released, had been on a hunger strike since 2007 and, according to his attorneys, had failed to get a judge to stop his forced-feedings. Rights groups charge that force-feeding amounts to a form of torture.
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Rosenberg notes that these were the first transfers approved by Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, "who at his February confirmation hearings said he would not succumb to administration pressure to increase the pace of releases."
Though U.S. President Barack Obama has repeatedly pledged to close the infamous prison, 116 prisoners now remain with 51 cleared from wrongdoing and awaiting transfer. Following the latest transfers, the Herald updated their list of who remains at Guantanamo.