Politics

Guantánamo Prisoner Who Completed War Crimes Sentence Sues for Release

GUANTÁNAMO BAY, Cuba — A Pakistani man who was tortured by the C.I.A. after which pleaded responsible to serving as a courier for Al Qaeda has filed swimsuit in opposition to the Biden administration for persevering with to carry him prisoner after he accomplished his struggle crimes sentence.

Lawyers for Majid Khan, 42, requested a federal decide in a 30-page petition filed in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday to launch him to anyplace however his native Pakistan the place, they argue, he would danger persecution. They instructed that he must be granted parole on the Navy base right here, which has about 6,000 residents, till a rustic is discovered to obtain him.

The Justice Department declined to touch upon the case.

Mr. Khan has a singular standing at Guantánamo Bay as the one former prisoner of a C.I.A. black web site who has been convicted of a criminal offense. He pleaded responsible and have become a cooperating witness for the United States authorities, beginning in 2012, when he admitted to delivering $50,000 from Pakistan to a Qaeda affiliate that was used within the lethal 2003 bombing of a Marriott resort in Jakarta, Indonesia.

At his sentencing listening to in October, he was permitted to explain his torture throughout three years of clandestine C.I.A. custody. A navy jury sentenced him to 26 years in jail and urged clemency in a letter that condemned Mr. Khan’s torture as “a stain on the moral fiber of America.”

With credit score for time served and different lodging, Mr. Khan’s sentence ended on March 1.

Yet he’s nonetheless at Guantánamo Bay, “held by himself, away from other detainees, and without direct access to his family or the outside world,” his legal professionals wrote.

He can not make or obtain calls from his household, which incorporates his spouse and a daughter who was born after his seize, the legal professionals mentioned. He additionally has been denied videoconferencing along with his legal professionals and a laptop computer computer to assist him put together for life after twenty years of detention, the submitting mentioned.

The submitting displays how troublesome it has been for the Biden administration to seek out nations to take detainees who’ve been accepted for switch. One of the legal professionals who represented Mr. Khan on the Guantánamo courtroom, Ian Moss, subsequently went to work on the State Department. His title is deputy coordinator for countering violent extremism and terrorist detentions, a key position in an office that has struggled to barter switch agreements for cleared detainees.

Besides Mr. Khan, 20 of Guantánamo’s 37 prisoners have been accepted for switch with safety assurances by an interagency board.

Brig. Gen. Jackie L. Thompson Jr., of the Army, who’s the chief protection counsel, condemned the delay in releasing the detainee and instructed that different prisoners charged with struggle crimes is perhaps much less inclined to enter into responsible pleas till Mr. Khan was resettled.

Ten of the detainees are in struggle crimes proceedings. Plea offers for six of these prisoners would get rid of the opportunity of a loss of life sentence.

“Keeping a person in indefinite detention after his sentence is over is very unhelpful,” mentioned General Thompson, including that protection legal professionals weren’t in a position to discover a nation for Mr. Khan. “We are at the mercy of the U.S. government for this.”

Mr. Khan’s lawsuit additionally seeks to enhance his situations at Guantánamo whereas the United States searches for a spot for him to be resettled along with his spouse and daughter.

His legal professionals particularly requested the decide to seek out his continued imprisonment illegal, to order his switch to anyplace however Pakistan and to order the jail to revive his entry to video-link conferences along with his legal professionals within the United States.

The navy discontinued Mr. Khan’s authorized conferences by videoconference after he accomplished his sentence, the legal professionals mentioned. They described that as a punitive measure.

His legal professionals additionally instructed that the decide “release him from unlawful detention at Guantánamo on bail or parole,” apparently borrowing a web page from the case of Uyghur prisoners from China who languished in U.S. custody for years.

After a federal decide discovered 18 of the Uyghur prisoners to be unlawfully held in 2008, their attorneys proposed that they stay in visitor quarters on a distant portion of the bottom close to the runway. Instead, the jail constructed them their very own detention space, known as Camp Iguana, the place the final three had been held till the United States discovered a rustic, Slovakia, wherein to resettle them in 2013.

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