WASHINGTON – The United States plans to transfer six Guantanamo detainees to Uruguay early next month, an Obama administration official said.
Uruguayan President Jose Mujica told AFP in an interview last week that his country was prepared to take in the six detainees without preconditions and that they would be free men who could work and travel.
Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel has informed US lawmakers about the transfer of six detainees who are among those already cleared for transfer, an official in President Barack Obama's administration said on condition of anonymity.
The plans were first reported by The New York Times. Of the 149 men still held at the US Navy detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, 72 have been cleared for transfer as they are not considered a threat to the United States.
"The United States is grateful to our partner, Uruguay, for this significant humanitarian gesture, and appreciates the Uruguayan government's generous assistance as the United States continues its efforts to close the detention facility at Guantanamo," said Ian Moss, a State Department spokesman.