Talks on Iran, a delay on Guantánamo, Economy: Barack Obama’s agenda for his first 100 days

Barack Obama signalled a new era in relations with Iran yesterday but conceded that he would not be able to close Guantánamo Bay prison camp early in his presidency.

In his most wide-ranging television interview since his election, Mr Obama made clear the scale of the challenges confronting him at home and abroad. He vowed to act immediately on the US economy and the Middle East crisis, promised to engage with Iran, confront terrorism and work out a plan to close Guantánamo. Those issues are only part of a hugely ambitious agenda that some analysts believe will prove unrealistic.

Mr Obama, who will be sworn in as President next Tuesday, repeated his pledge to close Guantánamo Bay, which still holds 248 detainees, but acknowledged that it would not happen in his first 100 days in office. “It is more difficult than I think a lot of people realise,” he said. “Part of the challenge is that you have a bunch of folks that have been detained, many of whom may be very dangerous, who have not been put on trial,” Mr Obama told ABC’s This Week. “And some of the evidence against them may be tainted even though it’s true” – a reference to claims that some inmates were subjected to torture and harsh interrogations.

Robert Gates, President Bush’s Defence Secretary, who has been asked by Mr Obama to stay in his post, ordered closure plans to be drawn up last month. Options being looked at combine a special trial system on US soil for the most dangerous inmates, while transferring other detainees overseas.

Read the rest:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/wo
rld/us_and_americas/article5497266.ece

In this photograph provided by ABC News, President-elect Barack ... 
In this photograph provided by ABC News, President-elect Barack Obama is interviewed by George Stephanopoulos during the taping of ‘This Week with George Stephanopoulos’ Saturday, Jan. 10, 2009 at the Newseum in Washington.(AP Photo/This Week, Lauren Victoria Burke)
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2 Responses to “Talks on Iran, a delay on Guantánamo, Economy: Barack Obama’s agenda for his first 100 days”

  1. Gary Baumgarten Says:

    Blogger and human rights activist David Swanson will be my guest on News Talk Online on Paltalk.com at 5 PM New York time Wednesday January 14 to discuss president-elect Obama’s pledge to close Guantanamo Bay and whether the U.S. human rights policies will improve under the new administration.

    To talk to Swanson please go to http://www.garybaumgarten.com and click on the Join The Chat Room button.

    Thanks,

    Gary

  2. Advisers say Obama preparing to close Gitmo « Peace and Freedom Global Future Says:

    […] Related:  Talks on Iran, a delay on Guantánamo, Economy: Barack Obama’s agenda for his first 100 days […]

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