As Four Afghan Men Released From Guantánamo, Calls to Free All Who Remain

Following the Pentagon’s announcement on Saturday that it has repatriated four men incarcerated at Guantánamo Bay to Afghanistan, human rights advocates are urging the United States to release all who remain captive in the U.S. military prison “without delay.”

Mohammad Zahir, 61, Khi Ali Gul, 51, Shawali Khan, 51, and Abdul Ghani, 42 were transferred to Afghan authorities on Friday, the Pentagon announced Saturday. All of them were cleared for release in 2009.

This is the first repatriation of men held in Guantánamo Bay to Afghanistan since 2009, and it follows the release of six people to Uruguay earlier in December.

The move was reportedly a delayed response to the request of new Afghan president Ashraf Ghani, who is strongly backed by the United States and recently signed the Bilateral Security Agreement, which locks in at least another decade of U.S. military entanglement in Afghanistan.

The four men are unlikely to face further incarceration in Afghanistan, according to a U.S. official cited by the New York Times.