Two Guantanamo inmates win release after 17 years without charge

June 21, 2021 - 12:29

The two men were placed in the notorious prison in 2004 after being arrested in 2002. They are said to be Ali al-Hajj al-Sharqawi, 47, and Abd al-Salam al-Hilal, 49, both Yemeni nationals.

U.S. Defense Department files show they have been approved to be released and resettled in a third country for rehabilitation. According to the files, Sharqawi was tortured by the CIA during interrogation in Pakistan. He had been accused of transferring money for the al-Qaeda terrorist group.

Hilal was detained in Egypt where the former Yemeni government alleged he was an al-Qaeda member. During military tribunals held for detainees at Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, neither men were ever charged for an offense.

The two are among 40 prisoners still at Guantanamo Bay. The prison is widely believed to have damaged America reputation overseas. Former U.S. President Barack Obama tried to close it down but failed. Current President Joe Biden is tying to follow suit. 

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