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Former Guantanamo Bay Inmate Resettled in Belize Sparks Controversy

Posted: Thursday, February 2, 2023. 4:29 pm CST.

By Zoila Palma Gonzalez: Former Guantanamo Bay detainee, Majid Khan, has been resettled in Belize, sparking international attention and divided opinions among the Belizean public. The resettlement deal was reached between the government of Belize and the United States.

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration, Eamon Courtenay, informed the public during a press conference that Khan arrived in Belize this morning. International media outlets such as NBC, Reuters, BBC, and the Associated Press have reported on the story.

Belizeans have taken to social media to share their thoughts on the resettlement, with some applauding the country for giving Khan a second chance, while others are condemning the decision, saying Belize should not be used as a “dumping ground.”

Khan, 42, was held under suspicion as a terrorist at Guantanamo Bay and admitted in 2012 to conspiring with al-Qaeda members responsible for the 2001 attacks. He has been serving as a government witness since and was captured in Pakistan in 2003, held at a CIA “black site” until 2006, and then transferred to Guantanamo Bay.

Minister Courtenay stated that Khan’s resettlement in Belize will be at the cost of the US government and while he will not be allowed to travel internationally, he will be free to move within the country.

In a statement issued through his legal team, Khan expressed regret for his past actions and asked for forgiveness. “I deeply regret the things that I did many years ago, and I have taken responsibility and tried to make up for them. I continue to ask for forgiveness from God and those I have hurt. I am truly sorry,” Khan said.

 

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