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Afghan inmate dies at Guantanamo Bay prison

Afghan inmate dies at Guantanamo Bay prison

By
On
May 19, 2011 - 14:05

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): An Afghan detainee at the US prison facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, was found dead in a recreation yard in an apparent suicide, the
US military said.

The prisoner, identified as Inayatullah, a 37-year-old accused of being a member of al-Qaeda, was found dead by guards conducting routine checks at the facility on Wednesday.

"An investigation is under way to determine the exact circumstances of what happened," Navy Commander Tamsen Reese, a spokeswoman at the
GuantanamoBay
US
naval base, said.

The prisoner was not conscious or breathing when guards checked on him in the morning, and they immediately tried to resuscitate him, US Southern Command said in a statement.

"After extensive lifesaving measures had been exhausted, the detainee was pronounced dead by a physician," the statement said.

Inayatullah is the eighth prisoner to die at the detention centre since the United States began sending foreign captives with alleged al-Qaeda or Talibaninfo-icon links to
GuantanamoBay in January 2002.

Five others died of apparent suicides and two died of natural causes.

Last year, a US federal judge dismissed a complaint by the families of two
Guantanamo
detainees who claimed their deaths in 2006 had been covered up when the Pentagon ruled them suicides.

The Naval Criminal Investigative Service will conduct an investigation after an autopsy by a military pathologist, the military said. Inayatullah's body will then be prepared for repatriation to
Afghanistaninfo-icon
.

Inayatullah had been held without charge at
Guantanamo
since September 2007. The military said he was an admitted planner for al-Qaeda operations, and acknowledged facilitating the movement of foreign fighters.

The prison camp, located in Cuba, has held 779 foreign captives since the United States invaded
Afghanistan
to oust al-Qaeda and its Taliban protectors following the September 11, 2001 attacks. It now holds 171 inmates.

US president Barack Obama had tried and failed to overcome objections by opposition Republicans and some of his fellow Democrats in Congress to transfer some detainees to US prisons.

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