- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Pentagon is preparing to move 17 detainees out of the Guantanamo Bay military detention center in Cuba in the coming weeks as President Obama races to close the facility before he leaves office in 2017.

The proposed number would be the largest round of transfers from the facility in a single month since 2007 and could reduce the total number of prisoners there to 90 by mid-to late January, The New York Times reported.

So far, the Pentagon has transferred 20 detainees in 2015.

Defense Secretary Ash Carter notified Congress of the proposed transfer this week. Lawmakers have required him to certify that security standards have been met at least 30 days before any transfers take place, The Times reported.

Mr. Obama is desperate to fulfill his campaign promise to close the facility, but has been met with strong resistance from lawmakers who have placed restrictions on where detainees can be transferred and barred any prisoners from being transferred to the U.S.

The administration has also been working to broker security agreements with foreign countries to take 48 detainees on a transfer list and is speeding up the work of the parole-board that might approve the release of other prisoners who are currently recommended for indefinite detention, The Times reported.

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