Shaker Aamer, the last British resident being held in Guantanamo Bay, is going to be allowed to come home, the UK government said on Friday.

Image: Reprieve UK

The 46-year-old Saudi national is married to a British citizen and lived with his wife and four children in London before his detention.

He has been held in the military prison in Cuba for 13 years without ever being charged or put on trial.

He was captured in Afghanistan in 2001 and accused of leading a unit of Taliban fighters. Aamer has always maintained his innocence, and his case has been regularly highlighted by human rights groups over the years.

A protestor holds up a sign calling for the release of Shaker Aamer from Guantanamo during a demonstration in London on January 11, 2010.

Aamer was cleared for release twice - first in 2007 by President George W Bush, and again by President Barack Obama years later.

But it is only today that it was confirmed Aamer is definitely going to be released.

A UK government spokesperson said:

We understand that the US government has notified Congress of this decision and once that notice period has been concluded, Mr Aamer will be returned to the UK.

Obama promised to close the notorious military prison when running for the White House in 2008, and signed an executive order committing him to it within his first days in office.

His administration is said to be in the final stages of drafting a plan to finally fulfil the pledge.

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