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Pentagon Considers Allowing Family Visits at Guantanamo

Posted May 12, 2011 11:19 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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The Pentagon is reportedly negotiating with the International Committee of the Red Cross to set up a program allowing family members to visit detainees at Guantanamo Bay.

Congressional aides tell the Washington Post that the ICRC is in “serious discussions” about family visitation. A pending Defense Department bill bans U.S.-funded family visits, but does not bar the Red Cross from paying for the program.

"High-value detainees” such as Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed would likely be barred from the visitation program, the story says.

Currently detainees meet with family members in video conferences that are monitored by the military.

U.S. Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, doesn't like the idea. He told the Post that family visits would create “major security concerns.”

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