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US Senate approves transfer of Guantanamo prisoners

Published 21/10/2009

The US Congress gave President Barack Obama a modest victory in his effort to close the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba.

The Senate gave final approval yesterday for a plan to permit terrorist suspects held at the controversial facility to be shipped to US soil to face trial, largely mirroring what is permitted under current law.

The plan was buried in a budget bill for the Homeland Security Department that won easy Senate approval. The measure now must go to Mr Obama for his signature.

Mr Obama in January ordered the facility closed within a year, but the administration has yet to deliver a plan and the effort has hit several roadblocks.

Among the problems is unease among Mr Obama's Democratic allies in Congress, who have refused to fund the effort.

Belfast Telegraph

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