December 22, 2014
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) - The remote Pacific island nation of Palau says it has agreed to a U.S. request to temporarily resettle up to 17 Chinese Muslims now held at the Guantanamo Bay detention center on Cuba.
In a statement released to The Associated Press on Wednesday, Palau President Johnson Toribiong said his government had "agreed to accommodate the United States of America's request to temporarily resettle in Palau up to 17 ethnic Uighur detainees... subject to periodic review."
Toribiong says his tiny country is "honored and proud" to resettle the detainees, who have been found not to be "enemy combatants."
U.S. officials asked Toribiong on June 4 to accept some or all of the 17 Uighur detainees due to fierce U.S. congressional opposition to releasing them on U.S. soil.