[JURIST] Republican Senator Mel Martinez [official website] has become the first major GOP lawmaker to call for the closure of the military terror detention camp at Guantamao Bay [JURIST news archive]. Speaking Friday in Florida, Martinez, a former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development in the first term Bush cabinet, called the facility an "icon of bad news". His comments echo those of several high-profile Democrats [JURIST report] who have recently called for Guantanamo to the closed, even as Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has said there are no plans to shut it down [JURIST report]. The Miami Herald has more.
In a related story, the Bush administration announced Friday that it has reconsidered its earlier decision to send home three Uzbek prisoners currently being held at the terrorism detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, citing concerns about Uzbekistans treatment of protesters [Amnesty International report] after recent civic disturbances [JURIST report]. The UN Convention Against Torture [text] bars extraditing prisoners to states where doing so would place them in danger of torture. The Boston Globe has more.