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U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe plans to visit Guantanamo Bay

BY CHRIS CASTEEL Modified: January 30, 2009 at 4:39 am •  Published: January 30, 2009
WASHINGTON — Sen. Jim Inhofe along with three other Republican senators plan to visit the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay on Monday.

Inhofe said it would be a fact-finding trip.

Inhofe, R-Tulsa, will be traveling with Sens. Pat Roberts of Kansas, David Vitter of Louisiana and Mel Martinez of Florida.

They will make the trip on a military plane to the prison in Cuba that is holding 245 "enemy combatants” captured in Iraq, Afghanistan and other countries since 2001.

Inhofe said he was compelled to take the trip after President Barack Obama signed an executive order aimed at closing the prison at a U.S. Naval station in Cuba within a year.

"I’ve always looked at (the prison) as being a real valuable asset,” Inhofe said during an interview on Thursday.

No solution for detainees
Inhofe said he doesn’t want the prison to close and that his visit would allow him to "speak with authority” about the need for the facility.

Inhofe said he doesn’t "have a solution to what we’re going to ultimately do” with the prisoners deemed most dangerous.