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Defense Department surveying S. Carolina brig for detainees

By MEG KINNARD

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – Pentagon officials are coming to South Carolina this week to see if a Naval Brig near Charleston would be suitable to house detainees from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

A congressional official with knowledge of the issue said Defense Department officials began notifying the state’s delegation Tuesday that they would be in the state Wednesday.

The official was not authorized to discuss the visit publicly and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

A similar assessment was conducted earlier this month at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Gov. Nikki Haley and Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback have threatened to sue the Obama administration if detainees are brought to either state.

Closing the Guantanamo Bay detention center has been a priority for President Barack Obama. The effort has faced hurdles, including staunch opposition in both parties.

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Kinnard can be reached at http://twitter.com/MegKinnardAP

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