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Guantánamo Britons To Be Released: A Mixed Result


Andy Worthington, author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison, explains why news that four British residents are to be released from Guantánamo provides grounds for cautious celebration, but also points out that two British residents will not be coming home. I was at a mosque in Glasgow […]

Out of Guantánamo, and into the fire: conviction of ex-detainee in Tunisia casts doubts on US motives


The recent conviction, in a Tunisian court, of former Guantánamo detainee Abdullah bin Omar undermines claims by the US administration that it has found adequate ways of repatriating wrongly arrested detainees to their home countries. A former railway engineer, bin Omar (51) left Tunisia because of religious persecution in 1989. Taking his wife and children […]

“I’m innocent,” says Guantánamo detainee Lofti Lagha, sentenced to three years’ imprisonment in Tunisia


The story of Guantánamo detainee Lofti Lagha, which I first broke here, and subsequently reported on here and here, reached a predictably sad conclusion last week when he was sentenced to three years in prison. The 39-year old, who had traveled to Afghanistan in 2001 after several years as an illegal immigrant in Italy, was […]

Judge prevents innocent Tunisian’s return to torture from Guantánamo


In a genuinely startling development in the US District Court for the District of Columbia, Judge Gladys Kessler has ruled that Mohammed Abdul Rahman, a Tunisian detainee at Guantánamo who was cleared for release after the first round of administrative reviews in 2006, “cannot be sent to Tunisia because he could suffer ‘irreparable harm’ that […]

Guantánamo detainee Ahmed Belbacha: UK government explains why it will not act to prevent his return to torture


On 6 August, just before the British government announced that it was asking for the return of five British residents in Guantánamo (Shaker Aamer, Jamil El-Banna, Omar Deghayes, Binyam Mohamed and Abdulnour Sameur), I wrote a letter to the Foreign Secretary David Miliband asking the government to act on behalf of another British resident, Ahmed […]

“We would rather be back in Guantánamo,” say Tunisians Abdullah bin Omar and Lofti Lagha, returned in June


In the Washington Post, Jennifer Daskal of Human Rights Watch provides gruelling updates on the stories of Abdullah bin Omar and Lofti Lagha, the Tunisian Guantánamo detainees who were returned to the country of their birth in June. Having recently travelled to Tunisia, Daskal reports that, although she was unable to gain access to bin […]

Britain’s Guantánamo: the troubling tale of Tunisian Belmarsh detainee Hedi Boudhiba, extradited, cleared and abandoned in Spain


The story of Hedi Boudhiba, a 46-year old Tunisian, who has been abandoned in Spain after being extradited from the UK and cleared of all charges against him in the Spanish National Court, calls into doubt the quality of British and pan-European intelligence about activities related to terrorism, and also raises uncomfortable questions about the […]

Lofti Lagha, Guantánamo detainee from Tunisia, says US forces abused him


Back in June, I was the first journalist to cover the story of Lofti Lagha, one of two Tunisians repatriated from Guantánamo, who faced an uncertain future in the country of his birth. While fears that his fellow countryman, Abdullah bin Omar, would face torture on his return to Tunisia (which were confirmed in July), […]

Deals with dictators undermined by British request for return of five Guantánamo detainees


In a resounding break with the policies of Tony Blair, the new British government, led by Prime Minister Gordon Brown, has announced that it has requested the return of five British residents in Guantánamo: Shaker Aamer, Jamil El-Banna, Omar Deghayes, Binyam Mohamed (aka al-Habashi) and Abdulnour Sameur. According to a Press Association report, “The Foreign […]

Guantánamo detainee – and British resident – Ahmed Belbacha: A letter to the Home Secretary and Foreign Secretary requesting his return to the UK


The following is the text of a letter that I have just emailed to Home Secretary Jacqui Smith ( and Foreign Secretary David Miliband (, regarding the prospect of Ahmed Belbacha’s imminent return to Algeria, where he is at risk of torture. I’ll let you know if I receive any response, but in the meantime […]

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Andy Worthington

Investigative journalist, author, campaigner, commentator and public speaker. Recognized as an authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror.” Co-founder, Close Guantánamo and We Stand With Shaker. Also, photo-journalist (The State of London), and singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers).
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