U.S., Brazil Officials Searching for Missing Ex Guantanamo Bay Detainee

Officials from the U.S. and Brazil are searching for a former Guantanamo Bay detainee who has gone missing from Uruguay. An airline in South America has already issued a warning that the ex-detainee may attempt to use a fake passport to enter Brazil just before the Olympic Games next month.

According to U.S. officials, Abu Wa’el Dhiab, a 44-year-old Syrian national, dropped off the radar weeks ago. Dhiab was resettled in Uruguay after his release in 2014.

Officials from Uruguay say Dhiab was traveling to Brazil. Brazilian officials have no record of Dhiab having entered their country.

Avianca Brazil Airlines alerted employees that Dhiab may attempt to fly using a fake passport. The alert, which was first published by Infobae, an Argentine online news portal, came from anti-terrorism police in Brazil.

The disappearance of Dhiab fuels concerns about regional security just weeks before the 2016 Olympics kick off in Rio de Janeiro.

Last year, a terrorism report from the U.S. State Department found that Brazilian police discovered a fraudulent document ring. The ring allowed more than 20 Syrian nationals to get Brazilian passports.

U.S. officials say Dhiab traveled through Brazil on his route to Venezuela, his last known location. Officials believe Dhiab is attempting to get back to the Middle East.

Written by Andrew


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