Thursday, January 7, 2016

No harm will come to Ghanaians by accommodating terror suspects – Gov’t

The government is assuring Ghanaians that it has taken all the necessary security measures to ensure the safety of citizens and security of the nation despite accommodating two former terror suspects.
Deputy Communications Minister, Felix Ofosu Kwakye gave the assurance after concerns raised by Ghanaians about the propriety of the country’s decision to accept two former Guantanamo Bay detainees of Yemeni origins.
On Wednesday, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs & Regional Integration in a statement signed by the sector minister, Hanna Tetteh said Ghana has accepted a request by the US government to accommodate the former detainees.
The statement said: “At the request of the US Government we have also agreed to accept two detainees of Yemeni origin who were detained in Guantanamo but who have been cleared of any involvement in any terrorist activities and are being released. They are unable to return to Yemen at the moment and we have indicated our readiness to accept them for a period of two years after which they may leave the country.”
“The United States is grateful to the government of Ghana for its humanitarian gesture and willingness to support ongoing U.S. efforts to close the Guantánamo Bay detention facility,” the New York Times quotes a Pentagon spokesman, Cmdr. Gary Ross, as saying in a statement.
The two Yemeni men transferred to Ghana are Khalid Mohammed Salih al-Dhuby and Mahmmoud Omar Mohammed Bin Atef. Both were born in Saudi Arabia but are considered citizens of Yemen based on their family and tribal ties, according to militarydossiers leaked by Pvt. Chelsea Manning.
Speaking on the issue in an interview on the Super Morning Show with Kojo Yankson Thursday, Mr Ofosu Kwakye said, “I can assure you, enough has been done to ensure that they don’t pose a threat.”
According to him, no harm will come to Ghanaians by the decision and, “We are confident that the number arrangement we have put in place; we will be able to handle the situation.”
He said the detainees should be in Ghana by now.
United States government, he noted, will bear the cost of the upkeep of the two former Guantanamo detainees.
The Deputy Communications Minister noted that, although the US itself has refused to accommodate the detainees, Ghana took the decision to welcome them on humanitarian grounds.
“We are [only] helping the United States,” he said.

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