The United State military has transferred two Libyan detainees of Guantanamo Bay Cuba to Senegal. This is the first time the West African country, celebrating its independence today, is receiving Guantanamo detainees. A statement from the U.S. Department of the State reads as follows:
The United States is very grateful to our partner, the Republic of Senegal, for offering humanitarian resettlement to two individuals formerly in Department of Defense custody at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba detention facility.
On April 4, the Department of Defense announced the transfer of two Libyan nationals to the Republic of Senegal. These two individuals, Salem Abdu Salam Ghereby (Internment Serial Number (ISN) 189) and Omar Khalif Mohammed Abu Baker Mahjour Umar (ISN 695), were unanimously approved for transfer by six U.S. government departments and agencies, either through the 2009-2010 Executive Order Task Force or the more recent Periodic Review Board process. Senegal joins 26 different countries which, since 2009, have extended resettlement opportunities to nearly 100 detainees.
The United States appreciates the generous assistance of the Government of Senegal as the United States continues its efforts to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. This significant humanitarian gesture is consistent with Senegal’s leadership on the global stage.
As the President has repeatedly made clear, the Administration is determined to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. The continued operation of the detention facility weakens our national security by draining resources, damaging our relationships with key allies and partners, and serving as a propaganda tool for violent extremists. We are taking all possible steps to reduce the detainee population at Guantanamo and to close the detention facility in a responsible manner that protects our national security.