Politics & Government

Brownback signs letter urging Defense Department not to move Guantanamo prisoners to Leavenworth

The Obama administration is in the final stages of working to shut down the military prison in Cuba that has housed enemy combatants since early 2002 after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
The Obama administration is in the final stages of working to shut down the military prison in Cuba that has housed enemy combatants since early 2002 after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. File photo

Gov. Sam Brownback has signed a letter urging the U.S. Department of Defense not to move prisoners from Guantanamo Bay to Fort Leavenworth.

The Obama administration is in the final stages of working to shut down the military prison in Cuba that has housed enemy combatants since early 2002 after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

Two sites being eyed by the Obama administration to house the Guantanamo’s prisoners are the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth and the U.S. Naval Consolidated Brig in Charleston, S.C.

Brownback and fellow Republican South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley have sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter voicing their opposition to moving the prisoners to military sites in their states.

“Those who are held at Guantanamo Bay are among the deadliest terrorists in history, including the principle architect of the September 11 attacks – Khalid Sheikh Mohammed,” the letter states.

Claims of torture have been levied against the prison and President Obama made its closure one of his promises during his first presidential campaign in 2008.

The letter contends that moving the prisoners to the U.S. soil would a violation of federal law because Congress has passed legislation to block their transfer.

“South Carolina and Kansas are sovereign states with excellent military installations, and we are proud of the men and women in uniform, and their families, who sacrifice for us every single day and call our states home,” the letter states. “We will not be part of any illegal and ill-advised action by this Administration, especially when that action relates to importing terrorists into our states.”

Reach Bryan Lowry at 785-296-3006 or blowry@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @BryanLowry3.

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