Earth & Conservation

President Obama's Plan to Shut Down Guantanamo

The proposal is likely to face stiff opposition from Republicans in Congress

<p>Photo via Medill DC / Flickr</p>

On Tuesday, President Obama announced a plan to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He explained that it is necessary to close the prison because it is "contrary to our values" and diminishes how the international community views the U.S. According to the proposal, 56 detainees would be moved to a new facility in a yet to be determined location. As reported by the Associated Press, these prisoners include individuals the government may never release and they will likely not be formally charged with crimes. Outside of those, there are 35 detainees who are expected to be moved to other countries later this year.

Watch More: What Life Is Like After Guantanamo

It's estimated that the new prison would cost $475 million to build and $305 million a year to operate. However, the current facility in Cuba costs $45 million a year and needs $225 million worth of repairs. President Obama anticipated that this would be a tough proposal to get through Congress and Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan quickly issued a statement rejecting the plan.

To learn more about why it has been such a challenge to close Guantanamo, watch this video:

Above photo: Activists march in front of the White House calling on President Obama to close Guantanamo Bay detention facility in this January 10, 2012 photo.