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Massena man to appear on ‘60 Minutes’ for work as deputy commander of Guantanamo Bay

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MASSENA - Every Sunday night, for exactly one hour, millions of viewers tune in to the long-running news program “60 Minutes” on CBS.

This Sunday at 7 p.m., Lieutenant Colonel Michael Shoen, a 44-year-old Massena native, will be featured in the episode during a story on Guantanamo Bay prison.

Mr. Shoen is the deputy commander of the prison in Cuba and will be interviewed by 60 Minutes correspondent Lesley Stahl.

Two weeks ago Ms. Stahl did a story on Guantanamo Bay for the program, but Sunday’s episode will include very rare inside footage of the prison where 164 accused terrorists have been locked up in the facility that aas opened after the Sept. 11, 2011 terrorist attacks.

Mr. Shoen’s father, Mac, lives in Massena, explained that his son was originally due back in the states next month, but now the wait will be a bit longer.

“He went there in July of this year. He was to stay until December. It appears now that he will be there until next July,” Mac said.

60 Minutes began running in 1968 and is in its 45th season.

Guantanamo Bay was established in January 2002, just four months after the World Trade Center attacks, and is operated by the Joint Task Force Guantanamo of the United States government.

In 2006, after numerous current and former prisoners reported abuse and torture, the United Nations attempted to close the highly controversial detention camp but was unsuccessful.

On May 20, 2009, the U.S. Senate passed an amendment to the Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2009, which blocked funds necessary for the release or transfer of prisoners held at the prison.

During his first presidential campaign, President Barack Obama promised to close the prison in 2009, but that has yet to be done.

Most recently, in November 2012, the Senate voted to prevent detainees from being transferred to the United States.

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