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 Most Americans against closing Guantanamo

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PostSubject: Most Americans against closing Guantanamo   Wed Jun 03, 2009 12:43 am

Wednesday, June 03, 2009


WASHINGTON:
Two of every three Americans are opposed to closing Guantanamo, with an even higher percentage against moving some of the detainees from the “war on terror” prison to their own US states, poll results showed on Tuesday.

When asked if the United States should shutter the notorious facility and move some of the accused terrorists to US prisons, 65 per cent of Americans polled said no, with just 32 per cent saying yes, according to a USA Today/Gallup poll published in the newspaper.

The ratio jumped to three to one against when respondents were asked whether they would support moving the detainees to the respondents’ home states, the poll said.

The findings spotlight the difficulties facing President Barack Obama as he tries to convince Americans that he should honour his campaign pledge to close the world’s most controversial prison, at the US naval base in southeastern Cuba where 240 detainees are still held.

On his second full day in office Obama ordered the prison camp closed within a year. But he ran into a buzz saw of opposition in Congress, where Senate lawmakers led by Democrats in Obama’s own party blocked the use of $80 million reserved for closing Guantanamo, and voted overwhelmingly to stop the use of any funds to move the prisoners to US soil.

By 40 to 18 per cent, poll respondents said they believe Guantanamo has made the United States safer, accepting the arguments put forward by Obama’s predecessor George W Bush and his vice president Dick Cheney that the prison has boosted US security.


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