Can Obama still close Guantánamo?

Barack Obama is making a last attempt to have the controversial Guantánamo Bay prison on Cuba closed down. US conservatives have already announced that they will oppose the move. Will he manage to keep his promise despite the resistance?

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Público (PT) /

Hope for an end to emergency measure

Closing down Guantánamo is a very important step, the liberal daily Público comments:

“Obama wants to show that the US is capable of closing a chapter in its recent history that was directly linked to 9/11. The transfer of the prisoners would put an end to the emergency measures introduced using the pretext of the fight on terror. Those who want to perpetuate Guantánamo as a symbol of that fight are ignoring the fact that this camp is only being used against the US now. Let's see whether Obama is able to win Congress over to his cause this time or whether he will have to resort to a presidential decree.”

NRC Handelsblad (NL) /

Guantánamo here to stay

It is unlikely that Obama will manage to close Guantánamo, the liberal daily NRC Handelsblad laments:

“A group of around 30 men are supposed to be transferred to 'Supermax' prisons in the US, Obama has now proposed for the first time. Then Gitmo can be closed and Obama will have kept his promise. But in doing that he would set up a penitentiary of oblivion for people who never receive a trial and are never freed. Guantánamo would remain and simply get another postal code, human rights organisations rightly complain. But even that won't happen. A new law bans this transfer. ... The way things look now, Obama's successor will inherit Guantánamo.”