US Halts Transfer of Gitmo Detainees to Yemen Obama administration wary of sending al-Qaeda new recruits By Nick McMaster, Newser Staff Posted Jan 5, 2010 3:47 PM CST 9 comments Comments This image shows men identified as the senior leaders of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula. On the far right is Abu al-Hareth Muhammad al-Oufi, who was held in US custody at Guantanamo Bay. (AP Photo/IntelCenter) (Newser) – The Obama administration has decided not to send any more detainees from the Guantanamo Bay detention center to Yemen. About 90 Yemenis remain at the facility, and half of them are cleared for release, but given the growing influence of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula—thought to be responsible for the failed Detroit plane bombing—the administration has deemed the risk too high. "While we remain committed to closing the facility, the determination has been made that right now any additional transfers to Yemen is not a good idea," said White House spokesman Robert Gibbs. The detainees may instead be moved to Thomson Correctional Center, the vacant Illinois prison expected to replace the Guantanamo facility, reports the Washington Post.