Four Yemeni nationals from Guantanamo arrive in Riyadh

The two US officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, were unable to provide the nationalities of the prisoners who were headed to Saudi Arabia. (File photo: Reuters)

Four Yemenis from Guantanamo Bay military prison arrived in Riyadh on Thursday evening , in President Barack Obama’s final push to shrink the inmate population there despite pressure from the president-elect to halt such releases.

Last April, Saudi Arabia - one of the top US allies in the region - accepted nine Yemenis under a long-negotiated deal between Washington and Riyadh.

It will be the first in Obama’s final flurry of transfers aimed at sending as many as 19 prisoners to at least four countries, including Italy, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, before Donald Trump is sworn in on Jan. 20.

If the final transfers go according to plan, only about 40 prisoners will remain at Guantanamo, despite Obama’s pledge to close the controversial facility at the US naval base in Cuba.

(With Reuters)

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:48 - GMT 06:48