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Joint Task Force 160 [JTF 160]

In Operation Sea Signal (August 1994-February 1996) Navy personnel based at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base (NAVBASE GTMO) Cuba, and Marines from II Marine Expeditionary Force assumed the mission of feeding, housing, clothing, and caring for more than 50,000 Haitian and Cuban migrants seeking asylum in the United States. Since September 1994, the Navy-Marine Corps team housed and processed over 40,000 migrants awaiting repatriation or parole to the United States. Support to Joint Task Force 160 spanned 18 months.

In January 2002 more than 1,000 U.S. service members deployed to the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to provide security for the Al Qaeda detainees under U.S. control. The base served as a temporary holding facility for Al Qaeda, Taliban and other detainees that come under U.S. control during the war on terrorism, DoD officials said. The U.S. Southern Command is in charge of the operation. Southern Command activated Joint Task Force-160 to head the detainee operations. The task force was under the command of Marine Brig. Gen. Michael Lehnert from Camp Lejeune, N.C. The task force included active duty service members from Fort Hood, Texas; Fort Campbell, Ky.; Roosevelt Roads, P.R.; Camp Lejeune; Norfolk, Va.; Dover Air Force Base, Del., and Charleston Air Force Base, S.C. Reserve component personnel also deployed on this mission. Most personnel will be military police. The service members staffed the maximum-security installation needed to house the detainees, provide for the detainees' security, and perform support functions.

Joint Task Force 160's primary mission is taking care of captured enemy combatants from the war on terrorism. It was established in support of detainee operation activities as the Holding Facility for Al Qaeda, Taliban or other terrorist personnel that come under United States control as a result of the ongoing War on Terrorism. The unit also provides support to Joint Task Force 170 which was stood up by Southern Command on 16 February 2002, to coordinate US military and government agency interrogation efforts in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.



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