Britain Wants Say in Fate of Guantanamo Detainees

Britain is exploring several options with the United States over the fate of two British terror suspects being held at Guantanamo Bay, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said.

Straw said Monday that detainees Moazzam Begg, 35, and Feroz Abbasi, 23, could face a U.S. military tribunal, as American authorities have suggested, or could return to Britain to face trial.

But Straw told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that it was "not acceptable" for them to be denied a fair trial. He said that even if they were tried by a U.S. military commission, Britain would seek guarantees that the trial take place in keeping with "the rules of justice and human rights."

Begg's wife demanded Monday that he be freed to meet his 1-year-old son, whom he has never seen.

Sally Begg also said her husband, originally from Birmingham in central England, should be tried before a British court instead of an American tribunal.

"I think he should be brought back home where I can see him, where the children can see him, where he can see his baby that he has never seen and who is one year old today," she said in an interview with BBC radio.

"If he has done anything wrong, then he should be tried, but he should be tried on British soil in Britain and with fair lawyers in a normal court — not a military tribunal," she added.

The United States has said Begg and Abbasi were on an initial list of six suspects who could face U.S. military trial. Neither has been charged so far.

U.S. officials said last week that the six on the list were, like other prisoners at Guantanamo, suspected of involvement with Al Qaeda, Afghanistan's Taliban or some other terrorist group. The next step is for a prosecutor to draft charges against the men.

Mrs. Begg, who has three other children aged 7, 5 and 2 with her husband, said she only gets a letter from her husband once every four months.