Lithuanian intermin sees no obstacles for hosting Guantanamo prisoners

June 4, 2009 at 10:57 pm Leave a comment

As the BNS wrote after countries of the European Union (EU) and the Schengen zone agreed on information exchange, no more obstacles remain for receiving prisoners from the US Guantanamo base, says Lithuanian Interior Minister Raimundas Palaitis.

“Schengen countries agreed that under their laws and decisions they may take in detainees but the recommendation is to host inoffensive persons only. Information exchange will be necessary,” Palaitis told BNS in a telephone interview from Luxembourg after attending a meeting of EU colleagues on 4 June.

In his words, should Lithuania decide to take in one of a few Guantanamo detainees, they will have to send applications to the Migration Department.

Lithuania is holding negotiations with the United States on hosting two prisoners from Guantanamo. Reports earlier on Thursday suggested that the EU could host a total of a few dozen people. The biggest problem until now was the possibility for inmates to travel from one Schengen country to another without any obstacles BNS informs.

“The recommendation is to only host the detainees who are harmless and clear for release, an agreement was also reached to exchange information among countries before the decision on hosting in one country or another, as well as during integration, regarding movement, etc.,” said Palaitis to the BNS.

The minister stressed that political aspect of hosting Guantanamo detainees should be discussed by EU foreign ministers shortly.

Lithuania has been considering the possibility of taking in for political asylum two inmates of the US Guantanamo Bay detention camp.

Entry filed under: Baltic States, Estonia, EU, Latvia, Lithuania, Northern Europe, Politics, Terrorism, USA. Tags: .

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