Thursday, 2 July 2009

Yemen demands release of 102 detainees from Guantanamo

By Nasser Arrabyee 02/06/2009

Sana'a- Yemen repeatedly demanded the United States to release the Yemeni detainees in Guantanamo bay or in any other American detention.

"Yemen is ready to try whoever involved in any terrorist acts, if there is evidence against them," the defense Ministry website ( quoted unidentified official as saying Thursday.

A list of 102 men by names including 19 Saudi nationals was published by the same website as the total number of Yemenis who are still languishing in American detention in Cuba.

The official also said that his government was working on a rehabilitation centre to reintegrate the men and help them to give up extremism and violence once they are back in Yemen.

A total of 16 Yemenis were released from the detention since 2004 including Salem Hamdan, Osama bin Laden's former driver, and two other men handed over as dead bodies after alleged suicides.

About 100 Yemenis are still there forming the majority of the 239 remaining in the ill-reputed detention.

The United States wants guarantees from Yemen that the men will not get back to fight with Al Qaeda if they are released home.

The Yemen Foreign Minister Abu Bakr Al Querbi said this week United States refuses releasing the detainees because his government refused the American conditions for releasing them.

"We refused the American conditions for releasing the Yemeni detainees in Guantanamo, and if we agreed on those conditions, we in the government would be held accountable by the MPs," said Al Querbi Wednesday in Parliament where MPs asked him why Yemenis in Guantanamo are not released.

But AlQuerbi, who did not say what kind of conditions, said also that American officials were reviewing the files of about 100 Yemeni detainees to decide what to do with every one of them according to instructions from President Obama who is supposed to close the detention on January 10th, 2010.

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