BERLIN – Germany needs more information from the U.S. on a group of Guantanamo prisoners before it can make a decision on whether to take them in, the country's top security official was quoted as saying Saturday.
Germany confirmed earlier this month that Washington has asked it to accept some prisoners when the facility in Cuba is closed, but officials have refused to say how many or to identify them.
"As interior minister, I am responsible for examining each case individually," Interior Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said, according to a preview of an interview with the Bild am Sonntag newspaper. "But what we have received in the way of documents from Washington until now is not yet sufficient in one single case for the decision ... on whether to accept them."
President Barack Obama has ordered the closure of the military prison, which has been strongly criticized in Germany and elsewhere in Europe, in the next nine months.
At the end of April, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder spent several days privately asking European leaders in London, Prague and Berlin for help relocating prisoners the U.S. wants to set free.
Schaeuble said he would apply three criteria in making a decision, Bild am Sonntag reported.
"Firstly: is it sufficiently certain that these people pose no danger? That is a concern for many citizens," he was quoted as saying. "Secondly, why can't the U.S.A. take the people concerned? And thirdly, is there any relation to Germany?"
German media have reported, without citing sources, that the U.S. would like Germany to accept nine Chinese Muslims, known as Uighurs.