According to a statement from the Department of Defense, Sufiyan Barhoumi was transported to Algeria this week.
“The United States appreciates the commitment of Algeria, as well as other partners, to support ongoing US efforts aimed at developing a deliberate and thorough approach to reduce the detainee population and ultimately close Guantanamo Bay.”
Barhoumi was imprisoned for more than 26 years before being cleared for release in 2016, but Obama-era plans to release detainees were called off during the Trump administration.
Barhoumi, according to a 2004 paper that labeled him an enemy combatant, had received instruction from Al-Qaida before being taken into custody in 2002.
The document said that Barhoumi “participated in a plot to bomb the U.S. using bombs remotely activated by a pager or cell phone.”
Barhoumi also lost four fingers attempting to defuse a land mine, according to the report. The Guantánamo Review Task Force recommended that Barhoumi be charged in 2009-2010, but nothing happened.
Has Joe Biden made the world more dangerous? According to a 2013 Wall Street Journal story, Barhoumi was ready to plead guilty to war crimes. HumanRightsFirst said the plea was intended to “plead guilty and get a release date.”
In Pakistan, however, the Pentagon sought to charge Barhoumi with a war crime after he was accused of being a bomb-making instructor. According to The New York Times, a court decision ended efforts by the Pentagon to bring charges against him for committing a war crime.
The Department of Defense announced that the Periodic Review Board decided on August 9, 2016, to release Barhoumi.
The board’s full statement, on the other hand, observes that “The Board recognizes that the detainee possesses some level of danger in light of his prior activities, talents, and relationships; nevertheless, in light of the circumstances and conditions described below, the risk he poses may be sufficiently reduced.”
The board also mentioned Barhoumi’s family ties and Gitmo behavior in its decision to allow his release.
The transfer was the Biden administration’s second this year and the third overall.
There are currently 37 people detained at Guantanamo. If the US will accept them, 18 more can be released, according to the Defense Department.
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