President Donald Trump, Tuesday, tweeted that Guantanamo inmates who returned to militant activity were released from the U.S. military prison by his predecessor, Barack Obama. “122 vicious prisoners, released by the Obama Administration from Gitmo, have returned to the battlefield. Just another terrible decision!” Trump wrote
The 113 of the 122 former prisoners confirmed by U.S. intelligence agencies to have “re-engaged” were released by Obama’s predecessor, George W Bush. Bush began sending suspected al-Qaeda and Taliban combatants in January 2002 to the base on Cuba. Data posted by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence showed that until the end of July 2016, 532 prisoners were released or transferred to the custody of other governments under Bush, with another 161 released under Obama. Among those whose recidivism was considered confirmed, only nine were released by Obama. The Pentagon said Monday that a U.S. airstrike against an al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) target last week in Yemen killed Yasir al-Silmi, who was held at Guantanamo from 2002 to 2009. The BBC reported last month that Abu Zakariya al-Britani, a British-born Muslim convert who was held at Guantanamo for about two years starting in 2002, died in a suicide attack for the Islamic State movement against Iraqi forces near Mosul.