The Libyan government today spared the lives of the foreign medical workers sentenced to die for infecting hundreds of children with HIV. Five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor had their sentences commuted to life in prison after the families of the infected children each accepted $1 million and withdrew their demand for execution, the AP reports.
The workers say they confessed under torture, and one of their lawyers expressed disappointment that they weren't pardoned. The ruling "automatically closes the legal case against them," the foreign minister said, and opens the door for the workers to leave the country. They have been in custody since 1999 and were sentenced to death last year.