The US should return 17 Chinese Muslims cleared for release from the Guantanamo Bay military prison, China said Thursday. The men – who are Turkic-speaking Chinese Uighurs – were cleared for release in 2003, but the US says it will not hand them back to China due to fears they will be tortured, AP reported. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said the men belong to a violent separatist group and would be dealt with according to Chinese law. The US has no authority to hold the Uighurs because there is no evidence that they plotted or fought against the US. On these grounds, a US appeals court has ruled that the men may not be immediately transferred to the US. On Wednesday, a Swedish immigration court granted asylum to one Uighur released from Guantanamo Bay. Others have been resettled in Albania. China objects to "any country" accepting the Guantanamo Uighurs.
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