Guantanamo workforce to include SC National Guard unit

A sign hangs out the Guantanamo Bay prison in this file photo

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – Military police from South Carolina are on tap to join U.S. forces operating the prison for terrorist suspects at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba.

National Guard spokeswoman Col. Cindi King said Tuesday that about 100 soldiers with the 131st Military Police Co. in Beaufort (BYOO-fort) have been told to prepare for a potential deployment in the new fiscal year, which begins in October.

It will be the first time a South Carolina National Guard unit has been sent to Joint Task Force Guantanamo, which is in charge of the U.S. military prison holding about 80 suspected terrorists.

President Barak Obama has promised to close the prison. South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has criticized the idea of transferring detainees to a Navy brig outside of Charleston, or anywhere else in the U.S.

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