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A Real Example Of Habeas Corpus

From McClatchy, the only news organization that remembers we have wars in Iraq and Afghanistan: In a first, court says military erred in a Guantanamo case

A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit overturned as “invalid” a military tribunal’s conclusion that prisoner Huzaifa Parhat is an enemy combatant.

The court directed the Pentagon either to release or transfer Parhat or to hold a new tribunal hearing “consistent with the court’s opinion.”

This is the first time that a circuit court has overruled a finding by a so-called status review tribunal, the Pentagon panel of military officers that determines whether a captive at Guantanamo meets the definition of “enemy combatant.”

Parhat, 37, has been held more than six years. He’s one of a group of ethnic Uighurs from western China who were shipped to Guantanamo from Afghanistan. The United States has faced numerous problems finding countries that are willing to accept foreign prisoners who can’t return to their own countries because of concerns that they might be tortured there.

Five other Uighurs who weren’t declared enemy combatants waited nine months after their release was approved before U.S. officials persuaded Albania to accept them. Parhat is one of 17 Uighurs still held as enemy combatants.

Declassified documents turned over to Parhat’s lawyers showed that government officials had recommended releasing him as early as 2003.

For 5 years this guy has been held in Guantanamo after the government realized that he hadn’t done anything and should be released.  The US knew there was nothing to be gained by holding this guy, but they held him anyway and came up with bogus charges to justify what they had done.

Uighurs are an ethnic group in China.  They are Muslims and nomadic herders.  The Chinese government doesn’t like them, and the feeling is mutual.  They went to Afghanistan to escape persecution.  Unfortunately they are outsiders in Afghanistan and were turned over to the US for the bounty.  The US obviously realized this as far back as 2003, but Uighurs are still being held in Guantanamo.

You really shouldn’t be held in prison for five or six years when you haven’t done anything wrong.  People knew this is 13th century England, so it shouldn’t be a surprise in 21st century America.