TIME Guantanamo

Where Are All Those Freed Guantanamo Detainees Now?

Moazzam Begg, a Pakistani-British man who spent three years in Guantanamo between 2002 and 2005.
Moazzam Begg, a Pakistani-British man who spent three years in Guantanamo between 2002 and 2005, pictured in London, Oct. 1, 2014. Rob Stothard—Getty Images

More than 600 former Guantanamo Bay detainees have ended up in over 53 countries

Over the dozen years since the Guantanamo Bay detention camp opened, more than 630 people have been allowed to leave the controversial U.S. prison in Cuba.

Over the weekend, six more inmates joined their ranks when they were moved to Uruguay as President Barack Obama continued to attempt to fulfill his long-held promise of shuttering the prison. The latest transfers reduced the number of inmates to 136, the lowest since the prison’s earliest days.

But where did all those inmates go? Those who have been transferred or released have been sent to at least 53 different countries, according to a list compiled by the New York Times and NPR. The majority have been repatriated to Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia or Pakistan, but hundreds of others have been repatriated or transferred to countries around the world.

(See more: Inside Guantanamo)

The majority have stayed away from terrorist activity and attempted to resume their lives, often in unexpected places. But 107 former detainees have since engaged in terrorist activity and another 77 are suspected of engaging in it as of July, the Office of Director of National Intelligence said in its semiannual report.

Here’s a snapshot of some of the countries that harbor former Gitmo detainees:

The United Kingdom

Moazzam Begg, one of 14 detainees transferred to Britain, is a British citizen of Pakistani descent who was detained in Pakistan in 2002 as a suspected al-Qaeda member and sent to Guantanamo for three years. He was released and dispatched to Britain in 2005, where he became a public speaker and activist; he was arrested again last February and charged with funding terrorism in Syria. Those charges were dropped in October.

Kuwait

Fawzi al-Odah was repatriated to Kuwait in November after nearly 13 years without a trial, marking the first of a recent wave of transfers from Guantanamo. As part of the agreement with Kuwait, which has taken in 11 former detainees, al-Odah will remain in custody for a yearlong rehabilitation program.

France

Lakhdar Boumediene, an Algerian who was detained while living in Bosnia in 2001, spent seven years in Guantanamo. Boumediene, who had been working for the Muslim branch of the Red Cross, went on a two-year hunger strike opposing his detention, and his case was brought to the Supreme Court, which issued a seminal decision in 2008 that Boumediene and other Guantanamo prisoners had a right to use the writ of habeas corpus under the U.S. Constitution. In the wake of that decision, he was ordered released — and in 2009 became one of nine former detainees who have been transferred to France, where he settled with his wife and three children.

Spain

Lahcen Ikassrien was handed over to Spanish custody in 2005 after the alleged Taliban fighter spent four years in Guantanamo; Spain soon released him for lack of evidence. In June, he was among nine people detained in a police sting on a network of jihadist recruiters.

Georgia

Six Guantanamo inmates have been transferred to Georgia since 2010, including three Yemenis who were resettled there last month (two others were sent to Slovakia).

Qatar

Six inmates have been transferred to Qatar, including one Qatari citizen in 2008 and five Afghan citizens who were released in exchange for U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl earlier this year in a Qatar-brokered deal with the Taliban. As part of the agreement, Qatar said it would impose a one-year travel ban on the five men.

Bermuda

In 2009, four Chinese Muslim men who had spent seven years in the U.S. prison were sent to Bermuda. The men, members of the restive Uighur community from Western China, were among the 22 Uighurs who had been detained in the wake of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan but were later determined not have been enemy combatants. China called for their repatriation–which would have likely led to continued imprisonment–but then Bermuda Prime Minister Ewart Brown negotiated their release. Yet five years after they arrived in Bermuda, activists said that the men still lacked passports and were effectively stranded on the island.

Uruguay

The six men now in Uruguay, including four Syrians, a Tunisian, and a Palestinian, are expected to learn Spanish and adapt to new lives in Uruguay after more than 12 years in Guantanamo. They had been approved for release in 2009 but the U.S. could not find a destination for them until Uruguayan President Jose Mujica agreed to accept them on humanitarian grounds. “It is difficult for me to express how grateful I am for the immense trust that you, the Uruguayan people, placed in me and the other prisoners when you opened the doors of your country to us,” Abedlhadi Omar Faraj, one of the Syrian former inmates, said in a statement released by his attorney.

TIME Uruguay

U.S. Transfers 6 Guantanamo Prisoners to Uruguay

Detention at Guantanamo grinds on: 13 years and counting, 148 captives remain
The original courtroom at the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Walter Michot—Miami Herald/Getty Images

Largest single group of inmates transferred since 2009

The U.S. has transferred six detainees at Guantanamo Bay prison to Uruguay, the Department of Defense announced Sunday.

The detainees, who include four Syrians, a Tunisian and a Palestinian, represent the largest group to depart the prison since 2009, and the first to be transferred to South America, the New York Times reports. The six inmates were held in the wartime prison for more than 10 years due to suspected ties with al-Qaeda, but were never charged.

The announcement follows a push by Obama to close the prison, as his administration believes fewer prisoners may convince Congress to revoke a law that prohibits detainees’ transfer to the U.S. While the men were cleared for release in 2010, U.S. officials struggled to find countries willing to accept the prisoners.

136 detainees remain at Guantanamo Bay today, according to the Department of Defense statement.

TIME Uruguay

Exit Polls: Ex-President Wins in Uruguay Election

Tabare Vazquez is a medical doctor who was president from 2005 to 2010

(MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay) — Ruling party candidate Tabare Vazquez easily won Uruguay’s presidential election Sunday, exit polls showed, returning to power a left-leaning coalition that has legalized gay marriage and sought to create the world’s first state-run marijuana marketplace.

Vazquez, a medical doctor who was president from 2005 to 2010, topped center-right candidate Luis Lacalle Pou, who had said he would shut down much of the groundbreaking pot plan that had drawn international attention.

Vazquez has promised to leave in place the plan to have the government regulate the cultivation and sale of marijuana on a nationwide scale, unless it produces negative results. His win is seen as a victory for the plan.

Three exit polls broadcast on the South American country’s main television stations all showed Vazquez beating Lacalle Pou by a roughly 10-point margin.

Two polls showed Vazquez with 54 percent of the votes compared to 41 percent for Lacalle Pou, and the third had the margin at 52 percent to 42 percent. Official results have not yet been released.

In October, Vazquez fell just short of an outright victory in the first round of voting, getting 48 percent support against 31 percent for Lacalle Pou.

He replaces outgoing President Jose Mujica, who was barred by law from running in Sunday’s election. Both men belong to the ruling Broad Front coalition, and the Vazquez win is seen as heralding a continuation of government policy.

Vazquez shook up Uruguayan politics when he became president in 2005, peacefully ending 170 years of two-party dominance in this nation of 3.2 million people.

Tall and trim, the 74-year-old oncologist is almost the physical opposite of Mujica, who is short, paunchy and famously informal. But both support social programs that have focused on the poor as well as continuing moderate economic policies.

In his first presidential campaign, Vazquez promised changes that would “shake the roots of the trees.” But he governed as a relatively cautious moderate, avoiding the constitutional changes and polarization that have shaken countries such as Venezuela.

Lacalle Pou, 41, is the son of another ex-president, Luis Alberto Lacalle Herrera, who governed from 1990 to 1995. A 41-year-old attorney, he has promised to improve education and public security, areas in which Mujica’s government was often criticized. He has also said he would shut down the state-run marijuana market, while allowing domestic cultivation of the plant.

He’s hobbled by some voters’ wariness of a return to the traditional parties that ruled through most of the country’s usually peaceful history, apart from a 1973-1985 military dictatorship.

“They did nothing for us. Now it is our turn, the poor. That other crowd governed for the other half, for the rich, not for the poor,” said street vendor Elvio Sosa.

Son of an oil worker, Vazquez grew up in a working class neighborhood of Montevideo and went on to achieve a medical degree. He’s also the former president of a professional team based in his home district of La Teja.

Vazquez continued seeing patients one day a week during his previous presidency, but said in a recent interview that he would give up medicine to focus on the presidency if elected.

TIME Uruguay

Watch Uruguay’s President Give This Homeless Man Money During a TV Interview

"I want you to be President forever!"

Correction appended: Nov. 27, 2014, 2:25 a.m. E.T.

Uruguayan President José Mujica was talking to journalists in the capital Montevideo on Tuesday night when a homeless man asked him for some change.

“Give me a coin of yours, Pepe,” the man said.

“Look, brother,” replied the President, “I don’t have a coin but don’t cry!”

Mujica then handed the man a 100 peso bill.

The man shouted, “I want you to be President forever!” to which Mujica replied, “No, no … You’re crazy!”

The footage aired on Uruguay’s Teledoce TV channel.

Correction: The original version of this story misstated that President José Mujica gave a homeless man a $100 bill. He gave the man a 100 peso bill.

TIME World Cup

FIFA Denies Luis Suarez’s Appeal for Chiellini Bite

World Cup Luis Suarez
Luis Suarez of Uruguay reacts after biting Giorgio Chiellini of Italy during a 2014 FIFA World Cup match on June 24 in Natal, Brazil. Shaun Botterill—FIFA/Getty Images

This was Suarez's third career biting incident

sportsillustrated

By Paul Palladino

Uruguayan Luis Suarez’s appeal of his suspension has been denied by FIFA, soccer’s governing body announced on Thursday.

Suarez was suspended last month for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup match on June 24. He was banned for nine of Uruguay’s matches in addition to a four-month ban from all soccer-related events, meaning he will have to sit out matches for his club, Liverpool

Brazil’s Nightmare Gets Worse: Argentina to Play for World Cup Title

It was the third biting incident in Suarez’s career. He was also suspended eight matches and fined $63,000 for racist remarks on the pitch in 2011.

In Suarez’s absence, Uruguay lost in the round of 16 to Colombia in the 2014 World Cup.

This article originally appeared on SI.com.

WATCH: Argentina Ousts Dutch, Sets Up Final vs. Germany

 

TIME World Cup

Suarez Bite Victim Calls Penalty ‘Excessive’

Italy's Giorgio Chiellini shows his shoulder, claiming he was bitten by Uruguay's Luis Suarez, during their 2014 World Cup Group D soccer match at the Dunas arena in Natal, Brazil on June 24, 2014.
Italy's Giorgio Chiellini shows his shoulder, claiming he was bitten by Uruguay's Luis Suarez, during their 2014 World Cup Group D soccer match at the Dunas arena in Natal, Brazil on June 24, 2014. Tony Gentile—Reuters

Less than a week after being bitten during a World Cup match by Uruguay forward Luis Suarez, Italian defender Giorigo Chiellini appears ready to move on.

“Now inside me there’s no feelings of joy, revenge or anger against Suarez for an incident that happened on the pitch and that’s done,” Chilleni wrote on his Facebook page Friday. “I have always considered unequivocal the disciplinary interventions by the competent bodies, but at the same time I believe that the proposed formula is excessive.”

The bite, viewed live by millions of viewers worldwide, provoked a wide range of opinions, including many who argued for harsh penalties. FIFA, the organization that oversees international soccer, ultimately banned Suarez from competition for four months and fined him more than $100,000.

TIME World Cup

Soccer Star Suspended for 4 Months After World Cup Bite

A bite comes back to bite Luis Suárez

Uruguay soccer star Luis Suárez was suspended for nine matches and banned from any soccer-related activity for four months after he bit an opposing player, FIFA said Thursday.

FIFA’s disciplinary committee ruled that the striker had committed “an act of unsporting behavior towards another player.” Suárez bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup match Tuesday. The suspension means Suárez will miss Uruguay’s upcoming match against Colombia on June 28. He will then have to sit out either more World Cup matches, depending on how far Uruguay advances, or other games in the future.

Suárez was also banned from entering any stadium during this period and will have to pay a fine of 100,000 Swiss Francs, or $112,000.

“Such behavior cannot be tolerated on any football pitch, and in particular not at a FIFA World Cup when the eyes of millions of people are on the stars on the field,” Claudio Sulser, chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee, said in a statement.

TIME World Cup

The Bite Heard ‘Round the World

Uruguay's star striker Luis Suárez isank his teeth into opponent Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup match that sent the Italy team home in defeat. The chomp was not even Suárez's first during professional play

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