On Thursday, the US Defense Department announced that it had moved another prisoner out of Guantanamo Bay, resulting in a reduction of the prison’s population to only 30 inmates. Liberal figures in the United States and around the world are celebrating this news as they view Guantanamo Bay as a highly negative symbol of the United States’ approach to the war on terror.
The Pentagon has announced that Said bin Brahim bin Umran Bakush, who was apprehended by US forces in Pakistan in 2022, has been sent back to Algeria. Following a board hearing in 2022 which concluded that his detention was not required for national security reasons, US authorities repatriated him. In February, the US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin informed the House of Representatives that Bakush would soon be released.
President Joe Biden made a commitment to shut down the Guantanamo detention center when he launched his campaign for the 2020 presidential election. Numerous progressive activists around the globe have condemned the prison, accusing it of being a secret facility where foreign detainees were mistreated without any legal protection under human rights regulations.
Following the release of Bakush and Majid Khan earlier this year, the Guantanamo Bay detention center is now left with only 30 inmates, out of which 16 are currently eligible for transfer. Bakush was apprehended by US authorities in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, as part of efforts to interrogate individuals connected to extremist groups in the Middle East. During the peak of Guantanamo Bay’s population, numerous suspects were held at the facility, as reported by various sources.
The White House accused Bakush of having affiliations with Al Qaeda and being an instructor for various organizations linked to jihadism after he was captured. However, Bakush consistently refuted these allegations.
Human Rights First reported that during his detention, Bakush was cooperative and did not demonstrate any extremist beliefs or ideologies.