U.S. releases remaining Chinese Uighur detainees from Guantanamo Bay

By Kyle Johnson,

On Tuesday, the U.S. military released the final three Chinese Uighurs and flew them to Slovakia.

They had been captured in Afghanistan in 2001, along with 18 others, but were determined not to be involved in any fighting, and in 2008 a judge ruled they be freed, reports The New York Times. It took the next five years to figure out where best to safely send the detainees, with the 22 being split between six countries.

Pentagon press secretary, Rear Adm. John Kirby, thanked Slovakia for coordinating with the U.S. to find an appropriate place to safely send them the remaining three. "The United States is grateful to the government of Slovakia for this humanitarian gesture and its willingness to support U.S. efforts to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility."

The Uighur were not sent to China over worries that they might be mistreated in their home country as some Uighur do not agree on being ruled over by the Chinese government, who has in turn treated them quite harshly.

According to BBC News, the U.S. hailed this latest transfer as a "significant milestone" as the military prison continues to slowly shutdown. Once holding over 750 prisoners, Gitmo has reduced its numbers down to a remaining 155.

image: Wikimedia Commons


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