Belgium offers asylum to Guantanamo detainee

Miami HeraldSeptember 4, 2009 

Belgium on Friday became the latest European country to offer asylum to a Guantanamo Bay detainee, announcing that it would resettle a captive now at the prison camps who has been cleared of prosecution by a U.S. court.

The announcement follows similar deals between the Obama administration and France and Portugal, which last month took in two Syrians for resettlement. Ireland has also agreed to take two detainees seeking third-country asylum.

President Barack Obama has ordered the detention facility closed by early next year and the United States has been seeking new nations for dozens of the 226 captives now cleared for release but fearful of return to their native countries because of stigma or ill treatment.

A Belgium Foreign Ministry statement Friday did not identify the detainee who would be resettled, or specify his nationality.

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