Detainee Transfers Announced

The Department of Defense announced today the transfer of four detainees: Salem Ahmad Hadi Bin Kanad, Muhammed Rajab Sadiq Abu Ghanim, Abdallah Yahya Yusif Al-Shibli, and Muhammad Ali Abdallah Muhammad Bwazir from the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay to the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

As directed by the president’s Jan. 22, 2009, executive order, the interagency Guantanamo Review Task Force conducted a comprehensive review of these cases. As a result of those reviews, which examined a number of factors, including security issues, Al-Shibli and Bwazir were unanimously approved for transfer by the six departments and agencies comprising the task force.

Periodic Review Boards consisting of representatives from the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Justice, and State; the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence determined continued law of war detention of Kanad and Ghanim does not remain necessary to protect against a continuing significant threat to the security of the United States. As a result of those reviews, which examined a number of factors, including security issues, Kanad and Ghanim were recommended for transfer by consensus of the six departments and agencies comprising the Periodic Review Board. The Periodic Review Board process was established by the president’s March 7, 2011 Executive Order 13567.

Name                                    Date of Periodic Review Board final determination
Salem Ahmad Hadi Bin Kanad              May 5, 2016
Muhammed Rajab Sadiq Abu Ghanim July 6, 2016

The United States is grateful to the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia  for its humanitarian gesture and willingness to support ongoing U.S. efforts to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. The United States coordinated with the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia  to ensure these transfers took place consistent with appropriate security and humane treatment measures.

Today, 55 detainees remain at Guantanamo Bay.

Release No: NR-003-17
Jan. 5, 2017

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