Two men who had been held without charge at Guantanamo Bay for more than a decade have been sent back to their native Algeria against their will as part of a renewed effort to gradually close the prison, officials say. Both prisoners had resisted being returned to their homeland because of fears they might face persecution and further imprisonment, according to their US lawyers, who had urged the administration to send them elsewhere. They had been held at Guantanamo since 2002 on suspicion of having links to terrorism but neither was charged.
Their lawyers accuse the US of showing a "callous disregard" for their human rights. Algerian state television said upon their return that the men were in custody and would appear in court there but did not say when or what charges, if any, they would face. In the past, most of the prisoners released in the North African country from Guantanamo have been questioned by a judge and then released. The two releases bring the Guantanamo Bay prison population to 162, only a handful of whom are facing charges. (Read more Guantanamo Bay stories.)