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Obama appoints Sloan as Special envoy for Guantanamo closure

Last Updated: Tuesday, June 18, 2013 - 11:30

Washington: The US has appointed Cliff Sloan as the special envoy for closure of Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention centre, State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki has announced.

"This decision reflects the Administration`s commitment to closing the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay," Psaki told reporters at her daily news conference.

Sloan would resume duty on July 1.

The continued operation of Guantanamo is not efficient, effective, or in the interests of US national security, Psaki said referring to a recent statement by President Barack Obama in this regard.

"Special Envoy Sloan brings a wealth of experience as an accomplished litigator and pragmatic problem-solver, skills that will prove valuable as he serves as lead negotiator for the transfer of Guantanamo detainees abroad and manages the multitude of related issues," she said.

Currently there are 166 detainees at the Guantanamo detention centre, down from 242 when Obama had taken over as the President in January 2009. A hunger strike by more than 100 of the 166 prisoners protesting their conditions and indefinite confinement has prompted the fresh calls for closure of the facility run by military.


First Published: Tuesday, June 18, 2013 - 09:43

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