The Pentagon, under the Biden administration’s instructions, transferred the first detainee from Guantanamo Bay military prison.
Former prisoner, Abdul Latif Nasir was returned to his native country of Morrocco on Monday, although he was subject for release in 2016 after the Periodic Review Board (PRB) determined he was no longer a “significant threat to national security.” A statement by the Department of Defense continued, “The steps necessary to effectuate the repatriation were unable to be completed prior to the end of the Obama administration. The PRB process was established by the president’s March 7, 2011 Executive Order 13567. The Trump administration affirmed the PRB process in Executive Order 13823 of January 30, 2018, but did not complete the repatriation.”
Democratic lawmakers have called for the closure of the controversial military prison, located in Cuba. Advocacy groups have long stood against the operations within the prison, citing humiliating acts, solitary confinement, temperature extremes, and forced positions. While the US government has denied these claims, former prisoners have shared their stories with groups such as the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
Following an inspection into the prison, ICRC concluded that the systems within Guantanamo “cannot be considered other than an intentional system of cruel, unusual and degrading treatment and a form of torture.” According to the organization, former prisoners reported that beatings, sleep deprivation, prolonged hoodings, along with other torturous practices occurred.