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US to Release Three British Residents Held at Guantanamo


Three British residents held as suspected terrorists at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba will soon be released and returned to Britain.

A lawyer for a British human rights group on Friday announced the release of Jordanian Jamil el-Banna, Libyan-born Omar Deghayes and Abdennour Sameur of Algeria.

London asked for the trio's release in August, after initially declining to get involved in their cases because they were not British citizens.

Britain was also seeking the release of two other residents in custody at the U.S. military base. The BBC says one of them will be returned to his native Saudi Arabia. The fifth man, an Ethiopian, will remain at Guantanamo.

The U.S. military has not confirmed the men's release. A spokesman says the U.S. has been working with other nations to accept Guantanamo detainees.

Just over 300 people are being held at Guantanamo. The U.S. has been criticized by human rights groups for holding the detainees indefinitely without filing formal charges against them.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.