MN National Guard deployed to Guantanamo Bay

For the first time, Minnesota National Guardsmen are on their way to Guantanamo Bay.

More than 120 members of the Monticello-based 257th Military Police Company will be deployed. There they will be providing care and custody of the terror suspects being detained at the base.

“Today we are not saying goodbye,” said Captain Jon Schliesing, commander of the guard. “We are looking forward to the time and a safe return and a warm homecoming upon the return back to Minnesota.”

According to a release from the Minnesota National Guard, the 257th Military Police Company deployed to both Iraq and Afghanistan in the past, where they were responsible for “coaching, teaching, and mentoring members of the Afghan National Army.”

The soldiers will receive specialized training both before and after their arrival at Guantanamo. “Our unit is trained and ready to professionally carry out this very important mission,” said Schliesing.