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News & Politics

Obama Considers Illinois Prison for Guantanamo Detainees

Top Dems, including Governor Patrick Quinn and Sen. Dick Durbin, have announced their support for the plan, calling it an economic boon for the area.

The Obama administration is eyeing a practically vacant prison in western Illinois to house terrorism suspects transferred from the Guantanamo Bay detention facility, following its closure.

Top Democrats, including Illinois Gov. Patrick Quinn and Sen. Dick Durbin, have announced their support for the plan, calling it an economic boon for the area, according to The Chicago Tribune.

Quinn called the prospect a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity" for Illinois during a fly-around tour on Sunday.

The prison under consideration, a maximum-security facility in rural Thomson, Ill., could house 1,600 prisoners.

Bureau of Prisons official will visit Thomson this week.

Prominent Illinois Republicans have voiced vehement opposition to the Thomson proposal. Rep. Don Manzullo, who represents the district that includes Thomson, expressed strong reservations, though he admitted the economic advantages of the plan.

Liliana Segura is a staff writer and editor of AlterNet's Rights and Liberties and World Special Coverage.
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