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US transfers Algerian inmate to France

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2009-12-01

The US has transferred an Algerian inmate, Saber Lahmar, from Guantanamo prison to France, according to his French lawyer. A US judge had ordered Lahmar's release in November 2008 due to insufficient evidence.

AFP - An Algerian detainee, Saber Lahmar, was transferred Monday from the US prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to French territory, his lawyer said here.

The 39-year old Lahmar is the last of five Algerians arrested in Bosnia in late 2001 to be transferred from Guantanamo since a US judge's ordered their release in November 2008 due to insufficient evidence.

Robert Kirsh, Lahmar's attorney, said the Algerian's transfer from Guantanamo will allow him "to rebuild his life as a free man after nearly eight years of illegal detention."

"Mr Lahmar suffered years of inhumane, isolating imprisonment. He was separated from other human contact until one month after Judge (Richard) Leon ruled that the detention of Mr Lahmar was illegal," he told AFP.

Kirsh praised French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner as "straight shooters throughout this process."

"We appreciate the opportunities they have given to Saber Lahmar and Lakhdar Boumediene," he said.

Boumediene, one of the five Algerians arrested in Bosnia, was transferred to France and released on May 15.
 

Date created : 2009-12-01

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