By Josh Lederman and Ben Fox, EastBayTimes.com:
The White House said Tuesday that the Guantanamo Bay detention center in Cuba will still be open when President Barack Obama leaves office, conceding that a core campaign promise will go unfulfilled.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters that the administration determined it wouldn’t happen when they realized they did not have enough time left to comply with the 30-day deadline for notifying Congress in advance of a detainee transfer.
“At this time, I don’t anticipate that we will succeed in that goal of closing the prison,” Earnest said. “But it’s not for a lack of trying, I assure you.”
Over the weekend, the U.S. transferred 10 low-level detainees from Guantanamo to Oman. Eight were from Yemen and two from Afghanistan, including an insurgent, Abdul Zahir, who was accused of possessing a white substance suspected to be a chemical or biological weapon but that turned out to be salt and sugar, according to his lawyer, Air Force Lt. Col. Sterling Thomas. All were deemed eligible for release after authorities determined they no longer posed a threat…
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