Obama to name D.C. lawyer to lead Guantanamo Bay closure
June 17th, 2013
09:26 AM ET
1 year ago

Obama to name D.C. lawyer to lead Guantanamo Bay closure

(CNN) – President Barack Obama will appoint Washington, D.C. lawyer Clifford Sloan to re-open the State Department's Office of Guantanamo Closure, according to a senior administration official.

The administration’s efforts to shut down the detention facility have been stalled since January, when the State Department shuttered the office tasked with handling the closure, and reassigned its special envoy.

A formal announcement is expected Monday.

Obama said in a national security speech last month that detention facility puts U.S. interests at risk, saying some allies are reluctant to cooperate on investigations with the United States if a suspect might land at the controversial detention center

"The original premise for opening Gitmo - that detainees would not be able to challenge their detention - was found unconstitutional five years ago," he said. "In the meantime, Gitmo has become a symbol around the world for an America that flouts the rule of law."

That's not to mention the economic implications, the president said. The country spends $150 million annually to imprison 166 suspects, and the Defense Department estimates that keeping Gitmo open may cost another $200 million "at a time when we are cutting investments in education and research here at home," he said.

Explaining that no prisoner has ever escaped a supermax or military facility - and noting U.S. courts have had no issue prosecuting terrorists, some more dangerous than those at Guantanamo - Obama said he would push again to close the detention center and appoint State and Defense department envoys to make sure the detainees are transferred to other countries.


Filed under: Guantanamo Bay • President Obama
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    We still haven't heard a report on what Sen. McCain & Feinstein assessed when they visited a few a weeks ago.

    June 17, 2013 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  2. Richard Long

    Guantanamo was soooo 2008 Presidential campaign promise. Guess he failed this one, too.

    June 17, 2013 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  3. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    The administration’s efforts to shut down the detention facility have been stalled since January, when the State Department shuttered the office tasked with handling the closure, and reassigned its special envoy
    -------------------------------------------------
    Is that right?
    I was under the impression that the relocation of the detainees to maximum security facilities within the U.S. was blocked by Congress.
    It is getting harder and harder to get the "news" from CNN.

    June 17, 2013 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  4. Pete

    I hope this attorney that Pres.Obama appointed to help close GITMO is a republican,it'll really put a cork in republicans mouths won't it!!They've been trying since day one to close GITMO and republicans has been the hypocrites refusing to help do it even though they railed against bringing these prisoners back here stateside or they weren't approved by other countrys prison systems in letting supposid known terrorists to cohabitate in their countrys prisons...Just get it don't Pres.Obama because Boehner,McConnell,Cantor have lost all grip with reality and they're losing their grip on their partys reins as well because of their incompetence...

    June 17, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  5. Tom1940

    The White House Spin Doctor(s) will do anything to divert attention from it's scandals. Nothing does the job better than resurrecting "Close Guantanamo". Like a fish on a hook, this Administration is wiggling, jumping and getting reeled in closure to being landed as each revelation (of a number of scandals), inches closer to White House involvement.
    It's like watching 4-5 "stories" play themselves out, on a TV Series.

    June 17, 2013 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  6. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    The less issues that we have to get them to hate us the better. It should be closed as soon as possible. Marines aren't meant to be jailers.

    June 17, 2013 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  7. just sayin

    "In the meantime, Gitmo has become a symbol around the world for an America that flouts the rule of law."
    --

    obama has become a symbol here in the usa of a government that flouts the rule of law.

    btw americans don't give a damn what the rest of the world thinks abpout this. those detainees will kill us if they are released, not the rest of the world. the same people blathering about gitmo also refuse to take these killers.

    June 17, 2013 10:36 am at 10:36 am |