[JURIST] The Latvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) [official website] announced on Tuesday that the country will accept one detainee [press release] from the Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] prison. The MFA accepted the detainee as a show of support for US President Barack Obama in his attempt to close the facility. The name of the prisoner was not released for security purposes, but it is believed [RFE/RL report] that the man is a Uzbek citizen who speaks fluent Russian and was arrested in Afghanistan in 2001. The MFA indicated the Latvian government received assurances from the US that no charges were brought against the man, and that he is not a danger to the public.
The Obama administration continues its push to close the Guantanamo Bay facility, despite missing its self-imposed one-year deadline last month. Last week, the US Department of Justice announced that an another Uzbek detainee was transferred to Switzerland [JURIST report]. Also last week, the Yemeni government announced that it will build a rehabilitation center [JURIST report] for detainees. The US had previously stated that it suspended transfers [JURIST report] to Yemen due to security concerns. Latvia joins the growing list of countries that have recently accepted transfers, including Slovakia, Algeria, Afghanistan and Somaliland [JURIST reports].