US hails Chinese Uighurs’ release from Guantanamo

Washington, Jan 1: The US has hailed the release of last three Chinese Muslim Uighurs from the US military prison at Guantanamo Bay as a “significant milestone”, BBC reported.

They were flown to the Slovakian capital Bratislava, where the US said they were “voluntarily resettling”. The Slovakian interior ministry said none of them were terror suspects.

Since 2001 the prison on Cuban soil has housed suspects detained by US forces during operations against Al Qaeda and the Taliban.

Guantanamo now holds 155 prisoners, down from more than 750. Many have been there more than a decade, and dozens were cleared for release years ago.

The US says it refuses to repatriate Uighur detainees to China due to the risk that they could be mistreated. China has cracked down hard on Uighur dissidents who oppose rule from Beijing.

In 2010, Slovakia — a member of the EU and NATO — also accepted three inmates from Guantanamo.

IANS