Military's Plan: Build New $49M Prison at Gitmo

Instead of closing, military wants upgrades
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 22, 2013 6:13 AM CDT
Updated Mar 22, 2013 7:51 AM CDT
The Guantanamo detention facility from May 13, 2009.   (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, file)

(Newser) – It's been four years since Barack Obama promised to close Gitmo, but not only are the camps still open, now the US military wants $49 million to build a new prison building there, reports the New York Times. With the new building—which would apparently replace Camp 7, where so-called high-value detainee are held—the military is asking for an estimated $195.7 million to upgrade the prison camp so it can continue to operate indefinitely.

Other items on the improvements list include $99 million for two barracks, $12 million for a new dining hall, and money for improving medical, legal, and communications facilities. While acknowledging the funding request is a hefty one, General John F. Kelly, the Southcom commander, noted "everything that’s built down there is at least twice as expensive." (Read more Guantanamo Bay stories.)

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