WASHINGTON — The top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said Sunday that the United States needed to close the military prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, which housed suspects captured in the war on terrorism.
"I think we should end up shutting it down, moving those prisoners," said Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. "Those that we have reason to keep, keep. And those we don't, let go."
The Delaware senator, also a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said on ABC's "This Week" that the allegations of mistreatment of inmates at Guantanamo and at Abu Ghraib prison outside Baghdad -- along with last week's Pentagon report of five instances in which Guantanamo guards desecrated the Koran, Islam's holy book -- had "become the greatest propaganda tool that exists for recruiting of terrorists around the world. And it is unnecessary to be in that position."
Biden said the Judiciary Committee was to hold hearings in the next couple of weeks on his proposal to set up an independent commission to examine Guantanamo Bay and other prisons for terrorism suspects.