Beltway Confidential

Pentagon transfers two Guantanamo Bay detainees to Algeria

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Two men detained at Guantanamo Bay are being transferred to an Algerian prison, the Defense Department announced, in furtherance of President Obama’s desire to close the facility entirely.

“[T]he interagency Guantanamo Review Task Force conducted a comprehensive review of this case. As a result of that review, which examined a number of factors, including security issues, [Nabil Said Hadjarab and Mutia Sadiq Ahmad Sayyab] were approved for transfer by consensus of the six departments and agencies comprising the task force,” the Pentagon announced.

Algerian military forces killed one of the top al Qaeda officials in Algeria in July, though not the same man responsible for the January terrorist attack on a gas plant in Algeria.

Some conservative members of Congress have expressed concern about transferring detainees out of Guantanamo Bay. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, pointed out  during a recent Senate hearing that 28 percent of detainees released have been found to engage in terrorism. He also noted that 500 prisoners recently escaped from an Iraqi jail.

“I think that likewise underscores the inherent risk in relying on foreign facilities to detain known terrorists,” Cruz said.

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