21:42 GMT01 March 2021
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The Pentagon will start offering coronavirus vaccines to the Guantanamo Bay detention camp’s inmates next week, The New York Times reported, citing a prosecutor in the case against five prisoners accused of conspiring in the 9/11 attacks.

    According to the newspaper, prosecutor Clayton G. Trivett Jr. informed the defense on Thursday "that an official in the Pentagon has just signed a memo approving the delivery of the Covid-19 vaccine to the detainee population in Guantánamo."

    The 40 remaining inmates in Guantanamo may reportedly start receiving vaccines "on a voluntary basis" from Monday.

    The vaccination of Guantanamo Bay Naval Base staff kicked off back in early January, but the Donald Trump administration had declined to elaborate on vaccination plans for prisoners, the newspaper reported.

    Meanwhile, the number of Guantanamo prisoners who have had the coronavirus remains unknown.

    The vaccination offer comes as war crimes hearings are set to resume at the base’s Camp Justice compound.

    The prison for international terrorists was established at the US naval base on the shore of Guantanamo Bay in Cuba after the 2001 War on Terror. The facility has long been criticized for mistreatment of prisoners and abuses, with human rights activists and international organizations calling for its closure.

    In 2009, President Barack Obama signed an order to shut down the facility, but failed to deliver on it. His successor, Donald Trump, repelled the order. In total, roughly 780 prisoners have been kept in Guantanamo since its opening.

    vaccinations, COVID-19, Cuba, US, Guantanamo
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