WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) and one of the first members of Congress to visit the detention facilities in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (GITMO) nine years ago, today made the following statement regarding news that 9/11 conspirators will be tried in a military tribunal in GITMO:
“Today’s news that 9/11 conspirators, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, will be tried at GITMO confirms what I have said all along. GITMO is the best place to carry out justice for terrorist detainees, and that is why I have pushed that effort through legislation and amendments. There is a $12M Expeditionary Legal Complex (ELC) at GITMO designed specifically to try detainees in a military tribunal. The ELC is the only one of its kind in the world and provides a secure location to secure and try detainees charged by the United States government. It provides full access to sensitive and classified information, full access to defense lawyers and prosecution, and full media access by the press. The prosecution of terrorists detainees belongs in a military tribunal not because it ensures a particular result, but because it is the best way to present classified information and present evidence that has been taken from the battle field. This is the right decision.
“For far too long, President Obama and the liberal left have played politics with this issue, only delaying the process and, ultimately, justice. From my visit on the first trip there on January 25, 2002, just days after the first detainees arrived, it was clear to me that those held there posed a high national security risk and needed to be handled through a military process. I knew then that we couldn’t afford to close GITMO. Gitmo is a state of the art facility, fully compliant with the Geneva Convention. It provides treatment and oversight that exceed any maximum-security prison in the world - as attested to by human rights organizations, the Red Cross, Attorney General Holder, and an independent commission led by Admiral Walsh. It is the only facility of its kind in the world and was specifically designed and built to house and try these types of dangerous terrorists.”