Thursday, June 11, 2009

Uighurs Back to Gitmo?

Oops. The British government is not happy to have the Uighurs in Bermuda. Bermuda is Britain's oldest remaining dependency and the U.K. still has final say over foreign policy and security.

The Times Online reports that "the Government of Bermuda failed to consult with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on the decision to take in the Uighurs – whose return is demanded by Beijing – and it could now be forced to send them back to Cuba or risk a grave diplomatic crisis."

"We've underlined to the Bermuda Government that they should have consulted with the United Kingdom as to whether this falls within their competence or is a security issue, for which the Bermuda Government do not have delegated responsibility," an FCO spokesman said. We have made clear to the Bermuda Government the need for a security assessment, which we are now helping them to carry out, and we will decide on further steps as appropriate."

Didn't anyone check this out first?

Update: The Weekly Standard weighs in:

"The bottom line is: The Obama administration negotiated the transfer of four Uighur detainees to Bermuda without first gaining approval from the British government. I suppose there are some in Bermuda's government that don't see this as necessarily a bad thing. There are some who want independence from the Brits. But you would expect that the Obama administration would at least seek to assuage British concerns first, instead of provoking British "fury."

Is this how diplomacy is done in Obama’s supposedly new-found “multilateral” age?

We eagerly await objections from the left concerning Obama's cowboy-like unilateralism."

Of course this complicates things for Britain, too, because now they have China clamoring to reclaim the Uighurs and now those 4 Uighurs are technically in custody of the U.K. I'm betting they won't be writing BHO a thank you note for that one.

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