Government Scraps Position Dedicated to Closing Prison at Guantanamo

The State Department office responsible for helping facilitate the relocation of prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba has been closed, The New York Times reports.

The paper reports that Daniel Fried, who served as the special envoy for Guantanamo Bay since the position’s inception in 2009, has been reassigned. He will not be replaced, and his duties will now be “assumed” by the State Department’s legal adviser, according to an internal personnel announcement.

Relocating detainees had been seen as a vital step in the president’s promise to close the prison, which was frequently and vociferously criticized by liberal activists before Obama’s election.

“I have said repeatedly that I intend to close Guantanamo, and I will follow through on that,” Obama told CBS’ Steve Kroft in November 2008.

Obama also signed an executive order shortly after taking office that declared the prison for suspected terrorists would be shuttered “no later” than January 2010.

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