Associate of USS Cole bomber refuses to attend Gitmo status hearing

[JURIST] The suspected roommate of a USS Cole bomber and al-Quaida sympathizer Saturday refused to attend a hearing on his status conducted by the US military at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The detainee is accused of traveling to Afghanistan to join Taliban forces against the US and to meet with al-Quaida operatives. Hearings before a Combatant Status Review Tribunal are meant to determine whether a given prisoner can be further detained as an enemy combatant or should be freed. As of today, only one prisoner has been released as a result of the tribunal while 131 have been deemed combatants; roughly 45% of detainees have declined co-operation by refusing to appear, and the overall process has been harshly criticized by human rights activists and defense lawyers. Panels are required to make a judgment on status regardless of a suspect's presence. AP has the full story. JURIST's Paper Chase has background on the Guantanamo Bay detainees here.

 

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