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US general to head military tribunals

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  • ummyakoub
    US general to head military tribunals ... WASHINGTON, Dec 31: US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Tuesday named a retired general to supervise military
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 1, 2004
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      US general to head military tribunals
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      WASHINGTON, Dec 31: US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Tuesday
      named a retired general to supervise military tribunals that are
      expected to try prisoners held at the US military base in Guantanamo,
      Cuba, the Pentagon announced.

      John Altenburg, who has been retired since 2002, will be "responsible
      for overseeing many aspects of the military commission process,
      including approving charges against individuals the president has
      determined are subject to the military order of Nov 13, 2001".

      For 28 years, John Altenburg served with the US Army as a specialist
      on legal affairs, according to the official announcement. The
      Pentagon also appointed retired general Thomas Hemingway as
      Altenburg's legal adviser.

      About 660 people of various nationalities, most of them captured in
      Afghanistan, are being held in Guantanamo as part of the US "war on
      terror". The United States has refused to grant them prisoner-of-war
      status and reserves the right to keep them in detention without
      trial. They may also face US justice.

      The Defence Department for the first time in early December allowed
      Australian David Hicks access to an attorney. David Hicks, who was
      captured in 2001 in Afghanistan where he fought with the Taliban, has
      not been formally charged, but the appointment of a military lawyer
      to handle his case indicated he will be tried soon.

      The Pentagon has also granted access to a lawyer to Guantanamo
      detainee, Salim Ahmed Hamdan of Yemen. A federal appeals court in San
      Francisco has ruled that Guantanamo prisoners have the right to see a
      lawyer and enjoy the advantages of the American legal system.

      The US supreme court must rule soon about the legality of imprisoning
      people in Guantanamo in response to a series of requests from human
      rights organizations, former diplomats, lawyers and retired
      soldiers. -AFP

      http://www.dawn.com/cgi-bin/dina.pl?file=top16.htm&date=20040101

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