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GITMO 2 doing legal business in Ghana – govt

Charles Owiredu

The two former Guantanamo Bay detainees are currently self-employed as they run their private business in Ghana, the Foreign Affairs Ministry has confirmed.

This has become possible due to the refugee status conferred on them by the government of Ghana through the Refugees Board in 2016.

However, a Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister, Charles Owiredu who disclosed this on TV3’s News 360 on Monday would not divulge the kind of business they two have been engaged in.

The two-year bilateral cooperation between the governments of Ghana and the United States of America to keep Mahmud Umar Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Salih Al-Dhuby in the country expired on January 6, 2018.

Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey told Parliament last week that the US government has washed its hands off the ex-detainees, which means they are now the sole responsibility of Ghana. READ MORE

The two former Gitmo detainees have been in Ghana since 2016


As the debate of sending them away rages, coupled with concerns about the country’s ability to cater for the their needs, then comes the latest development that the two are now working and earning income.

“As we speak now, they have their private work that they are doing,” Charles Owiredu told TV3’s Issah Monnie.

He was emphatic that “they are not doing anything illegal”.

He however assured that the activities of the two Yemenis are being monitored including their phone calls and messages.

The security apparatus, the deputy minister insisted, “is keeping eagle eye on them”


Charles Owiredu admitted that the decision by the previous government to grant the two a refugee status is making efforts to repatriate them to a third country “cumbersome”.

He said the current administration had planned to send them away because “we didn’t want the detainees to stay one day in Ghana” beyond the 6th of January 2018.

He said the ministry has been finding another country to take them and prayed that “negotiations we are  having with the third country would be fruitful”.

Read also: Ghana in talks with other countries to accept GITMO 2

By Isaac Essel | | Ghana

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