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US Military Temporarily Halts Transfer of Prisoners to Cuba


U.S. defense officials have put a temporary halt to the further transfer of Taleban and al-Qaida detainees from Afghanistan to the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.

Pentagon officials insist the "pause," as they call it, has nothing to do with criticism of the detainees' treatment. And they insist more Taleban and al-Qaida prisoners will be transferred from Afghanistan to Cuba once military authorities at the U.S. Navy base have the capacity to take them in.

But for the moment, that capacity has been reached with the more than 150 detainees already held there in what are considered temporary facilities.

Pentagon officials say military authorities are working rapidly to increase that capacity. They suggest prisoner transfers could resume by the end of the week.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has said the detainees are being treated humanely in accordance with international conventions.

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