A US Senator on Wednesday released a Pentagon Report [official report, PDF] detailing the profiles of those currently detained in and recently released from the Guantanamo Bay detention center. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) concluded that closing the facility would not be in the US’ best interests and would pose a safety risk. About the report, Ayotte said [press release] the more “Americans understand about the terrorist activities and affiliations of these detainees, the more they will oppose the administration’s terribly misguided plans to release them.” The report was compiled to highlight the terrorist background of many of the inmates and as a response to President Barack Obama’s push to fulfill his promise to close the facility before the end of his term.
White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough told Fox News in January that Obama intends to fulfill [JURIST report] his promise to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility before leaving office. There have been multiple detainees released from Guantanamo recently. Last November the US Senate passed [JURIST report] the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016 (NDAA) [text, PDF], which prohibits Guantanamo detainees from being transferred into the US. Obama signed the bill into law, despite the fact that it could delay his plan to close the prison. The NDAA comes after the Department of Defense said [JURIST report] they were sending teams to review three Colorado prisons as part of Obama’s efforts to close the facility in October. The Guantanamo Review Task Force (GRTF) was created in response to a 2009 presidential executive order [text, PDF] to review the status of all detainees. In September White House Spokesperson Josh Earnest said Obama was considering a “wide array” of options [JURIST report] for closing the prison.