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16% of Guantanamo detainees reoffend

WASHINGTON - The office of director of national intelligence said Monday that far fewer detainees released from Guantanamo Bay rejoined terrorist activities than previously reported.

In a new report, the intelligence office says just under 16 percent of detainees released - 95 out of 600 - were confirmed to reoffend. Some 12 percent more - about 72 detainees - are suspected of having rejoined terrorist groups and are being watched.

It was the first time that James R. Clapper, the director of national intelligence, has provided that level of detail, Pentagon spokesman Todd Breasseale said.

A Republican congressional report in February added those two figures together, coming up with a much more dramatic rate of 27 percent of the roughly 600 detainees released returning to the battlefield.


The Republicans on a House Armed Services subcommittee cited Pentagon figures because that was what was available at the time, Breasseale said.

This new report says that while the Pentagon has found what it considers clear proof that some detainees reunited with Al Qaeda or other terrorist groups, an almost equal number are on a de facto watch list, their behavior and who they associate with being tracked at almost all times.

The intelligence report warns that if additional detainees out of the 171 left are released “without conditions . . . some will reengage in terrorist or insurgent activity.’’ The report does not say what conditions are needed to keep a watch on the suspects or estimate on a statistical basis how likely the detainees are to reoffend.