Pacific island of Palau agrees to take Uighur Muslims from Guantánamo Bay Tim Reid in Washington The odyssey of 17 Muslims from China, allegedly captured by Pakistani bounty hunters eight years ago and shipped off to Guantánamo, is heading for the South Pacific after the Government of Palau agreed to provide the detainees with new homes. <snip> The tiny Pacific island nation of Palau stepped into the breach yesterday, agreeing to take in the Uighurs. They will be flown nearly 9,500 miles to the Pacific archipelago famous for its fishing and diving, and with a population of 21,000. “I am honoured and proud that the United States has asked Palau to assist with such a critical task,” its President, Johnson Toribiong, declared. A former US trust territory, Palau has retained close ties with the US since independence in 1994 and has received $450 million in aid since then from Washington. “This is but a small thing we can do to thank our best friend and ally for all it has done for Palau,” Mr Toribiong added. What may have helped the deal was an extra $200 million (£125 million) in “development and budget” aid from Washington — nearly $10,000 per Palau inhabitant, or more than $11.8 million per Uighur — but Mr Toribiong did not mention that. A senior US Administration official said that the additional aid was not tied to Palau’s decision to accept the Uighurs but was part of a separate aid package under negotiation. Pentagon officials were more blunt, calling it a “pay-off”. From Here In the midst of a recession "bo" wastes $200 million dollars. Why not send them back to China for free?