Former Gitmo detainees fear new destination: Yemen

When 18 Yemeni detainees from Guantanamo were transferred to the United Arab Emirates, they were told they would be integrated into society. Instead they were imprisoned and now the UAE is planning to send them to Yemen and further uncertainty. (Oct. 22)

Video Transcript

- After a review board determined a group of Yemeni detainees could be transferred out of Guantanamo, it was the beginning of a new ordeal.

KATIE TAYLOR: I can say definitively that the situation in the UAE is among the very worst we've seen. What the men were told when they were going to leave Guantanamo is that they would receive the support they needed for rehabilitation in the Emirates in order to rebuild their lives there in a safe way. But what happened was actually very different. Instead they were for they were thrown into a further secret prison.

- For as much as five years, 18 Yemeni detainees have remained imprisoned in the UAE, following more than a decade at the US detention facility without being charged.

The Associated Press spoke with several families who asked names of detainees be withheld for fear of reprisals.

BARACK OBAMA: We'll continue to securely and responsibly transfer to other countries.

- After President Barack Obama pledged to close Guantanamo, the US struck deals with several countries to take those detainees who could not be sent back home because of unrest. That's how groups of Yemeni men who had been swept up in Afghanistan and Pakistan after the 9/11 attacks ended up being sent from Guantanamo to the UAE.

Former US officials say indefinite incarceration was not part of the plan. The UAE did not respond to the AP's questions.

- While this mother has had some contact with her son in custody, she's worried now about what happens next. A senior Yemeni government official confirms there are plans to repatriate the men, but the families fear their loved ones will be rounded up once they return to war-torn Yemen.