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Hamdan's transfer takes place

Hamdan's transfer takes place

[27/November/2008]



SANA'A, Nov. 27 (Saba) – Yemen has received Salim Hamdan, the Osama Bin Laden's former driver who has been detained at the Gunatanamo Bay since 2001.

Hamdan was among many other Yemeni people the US authorities arrested in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Hamdan was sent to the Guantanamo Bay after he was arrested in 2001 in a battlefield.

Hamdan was tried under new military commission standards in August and was found charged with providing material support for terrorism.

He received a 66 month jail sentence after hi attorneys recognized his minor role, the decision which surprised US defense officials. 

Hamdan has served about 61 months of his full term at Guantanamo and will serve out the rest of his term in Yemen after the US authorities agreed to transfer him to his home country.

Recently, Foreign minister Abu Bakr al-Qirbi and Justice minister Ghazi Shaif al-Aghbari renewed at a meeting wit the US ambassador to Yemen Stephen Seche Yemen's call for the release of all Yemeni Guantanamo detainees.

The two ministers asked the US to provide evidence that convicts Yemeni detainees to be tried in their home country.

Al-Aghbari said detainees should not stay at prison without trial, because laws and international human rights accords never allow such measure.
For his part, Seche said the issue of the Yemeni Guantanamo detainees was being discussed by the new US administration led by US president-elect Barack Obama who announced his intentions to close the Gunatanamo Prison.

In this context, Yemeni authorities have identified the place where the center for rehabilitating returnees from Gunatanamo that would be established with the aim to re-educate the returnees to include them in the society.

Yemen has prepared a program including measures related to receiving the detainees aiming at adopting an efficient strategy to fight extremism through rehabilitating those who were jailed at the Guantanamo Bay.

The program also includes modern instruments and mechanisms to care of the return detainees well by rehabilitating them psychologically, practically and materially as well as help them to have good living conditions that help them be active community assets.

Hamdan, who is about 40, was captured in Afghanistan in November 2001.

He admitted working for Bin Laden in Afghanistan from 1997 to 2001 for $200 (£134) a month, but he said he worked for wages, not to wage war on the US.
The tribunal rejected the charges that Hamdan conspired with others to carry out al-Qaeda attacks, including those on 11 September 2001.

About 270 suspects remain in detention in Guantanamo Bay, which is on a US base in Cuba.

Among the dozens of other inmates due to be tried there in the coming months are men accused of plotting the 9/11 attacks.

Human rights campaigners have condemned the tribunal system. Amnesty International says it is "fundamentally flawed" and should be abandoned.

FR
Saba

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