Former Guantanamo detainee Abdul Latif Nasser was reunited with his family in Casablanca after US troops transferred him to Moroccan state custody, his lawyers said Tuesday.
US troops flown 56-year-old Mr Nasser on Sunday during the first release of a prisoner from prison by the Biden government from Guantánamo Bay. American and Moroccan officials had approved security arrangements for his return in the last few days of the Obama administration, but the deal was put on hold when President Donald J. Trump halted all transfers when he took office.
“He’s excited,” said Bernard E. Harcourt, a New York-based attorney and law professor who represented Mr. Nasser in federal court. He and his co-lawyer Thomas Anthony Durkin telephoned Mr Nasser in his family home in Casablanca and said that the former prisoners of more than 19 years were in a good mood. He was particularly supported by reuniting with extended family members who had gathered for Eid al-Adha, the Muslim holiday known as the Festival of Sacrifice, Harcourt added.
“He said it was great for him to go home when his whole family was around,” said Harcourt.
Mr Nasser’s legal status in his home country was unclear. He was held for a period in a prison near Casablanca on Monday, and Moroccan judicial officials said in a statement that police are investigating him for alleged involvement in terrorism.
The investigation was not unusual. Former Moroccan citizens repatriated from Guantánamo have been detained for days, if not months, and some have been charged with terrorist offenses.
London-based law firm and human rights firm Reprieve said in a statement that Mr. Nasser would not be conducting interviews with news organizations “for the foreseeable future”. He quoted him in the statement as saying that although he was born on March 4th, he considered himself “born again” on July 19th, the day he was released from US military custody.