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Norwegian rejects Guantanamo prisoners

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Norway refuses to accept 20 Chinese prisoners who have been detained at the Guantanamo base on Cuba for the past three years.

The 20 persons in question are among many who were accused of terror actions after the fall of Taliban regime in Afghanistan the fall of 2001. They are Uighurs, members of the Muslim minority in the Xingjian province, who is fighting for a greater independence from China for a long time.

The American authorities have now concluded that the Uighurs at the Guantanamo base do not post a terror threat and want to be rid of them. China has demanded to get them extradited, but since they are Uighurs they may face long prison sentences or worse, capital punishment.

The US has therefore asked several countries, among these Norway, to accept the Uighurs, but Norwegian authorities said no, reported the Norwegian television channel NRK.

Norway claims the Americans have to deal with this themselves and fears aiding the Americans in this may threaten Norway’s relationship to China.

Rebiya Kadeer, the jailed Urghurian human rights activist, will this weekend be awarded the Rafto prize, but neither she nor any member of her family will be able to attend the ceremony to accept the prize.

«The most important thing now is to prevent that they are sent back to China, where we know that they will not receive a just sentence,» said Arne Liljedal Lynngård, head of the Rafto Foundation. «They should get residence in a Western country, and then check if they have something on their conscious. In China they will get an unfair destiny.»

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