Image of Pentagon oval   United States Department of Defense
News Releases

  No. 882-03
IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 24, 2003

Transfer of Guantanamo Detainees Complete

           The Department of Defense announced today that it transferred 20 detainees for release from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to their home countries on Nov. 21.  Additionally, approximately 20 detainees arrived at Guantanamo from the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility on Nov. 23, so that the number of detainees at GTMO is approximately 660.


            Senior leadership of the Department of Defense, in consultation with other senior U.S. government officials, determined that these detainees either no longer posed a threat to U.S. security or no longer required detention by the United States.


            Transfer or release of detainees can be based on many factors, including law enforcement and intelligence, as well as whether the individual would pose a threat to the United States. At the time of their detention, these enemy combatants posed a threat to U.S. security.


            In general terms, the reasons detainees may be released are based on the nature of the continuing threat they may pose to U.S. security.


            During the course of the War on Terrorism, we expect that there will be other transfers or releases of detainees. Because of operational security considerations, no further details will be available.


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