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Bush says he would like to close Guantanamo


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#1    __Kratos__

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Posted 07 May 2006 - 10:47 PM

BERLIN (Reuters) -     President George W. Bush said he would like to close the U.S.-run prison at Guantanamo Bay -- a step urged by several U.S. allies -- but was awaiting a Supreme Court ruling on how suspects held there might be tried.

"Of course Guantanamo is a delicate issue for people. I would like to close the camp and put the prisoners on trial," Bush said in comments to German television to be broadcast on Sunday night. The interview was recorded last week.

Human-rights groups have accused the United States of mistreating Guantanamo detainees through cruel interrogation methods, a charge denied by the U.S. government.

They also criticize the indefinite detention of suspects captured since the military prison was opened in 2002 at the U.S. naval base in Cuba, as part of the Bush administration's war on terrorism.

Bush was asked by the German public television station ARD how the United States could restore its human-rights image following reports of prisoner abuse.

"Our top court must still rule on whether they should go before a civil or military court," he said.

"They will get their day in court. One can't say that of the people that they killed. They didn't give these people the opportunity for a fair trial."

The quotes were translated by Reuters from a German transcript.

The     U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule by the end of June on whether military tribunals of foreign terrorist suspects can proceed.

Bush's comments were a reiteration of long-standing U.S. policy, Frederick Jones, spokesman for the White House National Security Council, said in Washington.

"The United States has no intention of permanently detaining individuals, that is not our goal. We want to see all these individuals brought to justice," he said, whether in their home countries or in the United States.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, however, has dismissed calls for the prison to be closed.

"Every once and a while someone pops up and gets some press for saying 'Oh let's close Guantanamo Bay.' Well, if someone has a better idea, I'd like to hear it," Rumsfeld said in a February speech to the Council on Foreign Relations.

The United States has 480 detainees at Guantanamo and has freed or handed over to their home governments a total of 272. The     Pentagon has said it has no interest in holding anyone longer than necessary but that it has been unable to arrange for some to return to their home countries.

The Pentagon says the detainees come from 40 countries and the     West Bank, with the largest number from Saudi Arabia,     Afghanistan and Yemen.

In a report last week for the U.N. Committee against Torture, Amnesty International said torture and inhumane treatment were "widespread" in U.S.-run detention centers, including Guantanamo Bay.

The United States defended its treatment of foreign terrorism suspects in a hearing before the committee in Geneva on Friday, saying it backed a ban on torture.
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#2    Reincarnated

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Posted 07 May 2006 - 10:50 PM

it's all BS to me untill i actually see guantanamo shut down. and even if it is, there are many more camps out there anyways so all of this does not matter.


#3    Avinash_Tyagi

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Posted 07 May 2006 - 10:51 PM

blink.gif Wow...Good, glad to hear it thumbsup.gif

If he's serious then my opinion of him went up.

Edited by Avinash_Tyagi, 07 May 2006 - 10:53 PM.

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#4    Reincarnated

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Posted 07 May 2006 - 11:03 PM

Quote

If he's serious then my opinion of him went up.
that is what this article is trying to do. i suggest you not jump the gun and give him a better opinion or credit just because of what he said. he's lied to america ever since he stepped foot in office. wait for results, actions speak louder than words.


#5    Avinash_Tyagi

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Posted 07 May 2006 - 11:13 PM

Quote


that is what this article is trying to do. i suggest you not jump the gun and give him a better opinion or credit just because of what he said. he's lied to america ever since he stepped foot in office. wait for results, actions speak louder than words.


Oh I will, but i'm fair, if he proves he's willing to learn from his many mistakes then good.

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#6    Sanjuro

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Posted 08 May 2006 - 02:57 PM

Yeah, he will close Guantanamo bay and will open few more secret camps..so there is no difference except that we wont see anything in press anymore.

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#7    Watzel

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Posted 08 May 2006 - 04:01 PM

Of course Sanjuro, you don't think the US would actually let those people go do you?


#8    RedEyeJedi

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Posted 11 May 2006 - 09:52 AM

I was originally going to post on this thread that this was just doublespeak. Saying one thing meaning another. Saying 'you would like' to do something doesn't mean you have the intention of doing it. I 'would like to win the lottery'. Will I? I'm not so sure.

I didn't post my thoughts because I didn't realise I would have been proved right, so soon.

Quote


UK told US won't shut Guantanamo

The US has rejected the UK government's calls for closing down the Guantanamo Bay prison camp for terror suspects.

US officials said the camp housed dangerous people who could pose a fresh threat if they were released.

The UK Attorney General Lord Goldsmith said on Wednesday the camp's existence was "unacceptable" and tarnished the US traditions of liberty and justice.

The criticism shows a significant shift in the UK's stance on the camp run by its US ally, our correspondent says.

UK Prime Minister Tony Blair has, in the past, called the prison camp at the US base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, an "anomaly".

But in the strongest criticism yet from a UK government minister, Lord Goldsmith said the camp had become a symbol of injustice.

"The historic tradition of the United States as a beacon of freedom, liberty and of justice deserves the removal of this symbol," he said.

Lord Goldsmith is said to have serious doubts over whether the indefinite detention of "enemy combatants" is legal or fair.

International criticism

Responding to the criticism, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said the US "would like nothing better" than to close Guantanamo down at some point in the future.

Echoing the words of US President George W Bush - who in a TV interview on Sunday said he would like to "end" the detention centre - he said: "Nobody wants to be a jailer for the world."

"But the fact of the matter is that the people there are dangerous people," Mr McCormack said.

"One thing we don't want to do is release people now who might at some point in the future end up on the battlefield facing our troops or somebody else's troops, or committing acts of terrorism against civilians."

A Pentagon spokesman said: "The dangerous detainees at Guantanamo include terrorist trainers, bomb makers and would-be suicide bombers, many who have vowed to return to the fight."

Around 490 detainees are in Guantanamo Bay, which opened in January 2002.

There has been international criticism of conditions at the US camp and the length of time detainees have been held there without trial.

Rights groups have said the detainees, held on suspicion of involvement in terrorism, are mistreated through cruel interrogation methods - a charge the US denies.

'Proportionate response'

Lord Goldsmith told the London-based Royal United Services Institute there was a case for limiting some rights for collective security.

But he said the right to a fair trial should never be compromised.

Nine British nationals at Guantanamo were returned to the UK in 2004 and 2005 after government intervention.

Lord Goldsmith said the UK was "unable to accept that the US military tribunals proposed for those detained at Guantanamo Bay offered sufficient guarantees of a fair trial in accordance with international standards".

He went on to defend the European Convention on Human Rights and the UK's Human Rights Act.

"Fundamental rights must be protected if we are to preserve our democracies but given the current threat to our national security we have to be flexible about how we achieve this," he said.

Lord Goldsmith also defended the creation in the UK of new criminal offences in the Terrorism Act 2006 to counter "some features of al-Qaeda type terrorism which distinguish it from other forms of crime".

"Where we depart from traditional ways of guaranteeing civil liberties we should be clear that our actions are proportionate to the threat and needed to meet it," he said.
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#9    __Kratos__

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Posted 11 May 2006 - 03:43 PM

Quote


That lying scoundrel. angry.gif


Glad I had my coffee this morning. *takes drink* Helps me jump start my brain to read words...

Quote

"Our top court must still rule on whether they should go before a civil or military court," he said.


He still wants to close it in the future but right now he's waiting on our U.S. Supreme Court, which is expected to rule in late June.

The UK Attorney General Lord Goldsmith it playing a political card because he forced a rejection from the US after it set a rough time table. wink2.gif

Edited by __Kratos__, 11 May 2006 - 03:44 PM.

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#10    IronGhost

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Posted 11 May 2006 - 03:57 PM

Remember that Bush was speaking to the German press where this is a very hot issue -- certainly Bush would tailor his remarks more to what the Germans and other Europeans want to hear.

Will he close GitMo?   Not as long as he's President.

But we'll see -- actions are louder than words.




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