Biden Administration Remains Committed to Close Guantanamo Bay, State Department Says
© AP Photo / Alex BrandonIn this Aug. 29, 2021, file photo reviewed by U.S. military officials, a flag flies at half-staff in honor of the U.S. service members and other victims killed in the terrorist attack in Kabul, Afghanistan, as seen from Camp Justice in Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, Cuba.
© AP Photo / Alex Brandon
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The Biden administration continues to remain committed to responsibly closing Guantanamo Bay, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said on Thursday.
"When it comes to Guantanamo, we remain dedicated to a deliberate and to a thorough process focused on responsibly reducing the detainee population in Guantanamo Bay and eventually closing the facility," Price said in a conference call with reporters.
The State Department is currently seeking to identify and negotiate transfer agreements with countries for eligible detainees, Price said.
The Guantanamo Bay detention facility established by the Bush administration in 2002 has long been criticized for mistreatment and abuse of prisoners, driving human rights activists and international organizations to call for it be closed.
Former US President Barack Obama vowed to shut down the detention center, but faced strong opposition from Congress. His successor, Donald Trump, signed an order to keep the detention camp open indefinitely, while incumbent Joe Biden has promised to close it.
US authorities have since shut down the secretive Camp Seven, where highly classified prisoners were kept, and transferred them to other blocks. In July, the White House announced that the Biden administration is aiming to close the detention facility for good and working to transfer its remaining prisoners out, but no date has been set.