Lakhdar Boumediene

Lakhdar Boumediene

Lakhdar Boumediene is a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina held in military custody in the United States Guantanamo Bay detention camps, in Cuba. His Guantanamo Internee Security Number is 10005. Joint Task Force Guantanamo counter-terrorism analysts report he was born on April 27 1966, in Ain Soltgane Saeda, Algeria.

Background

In early October 2001, less than a month after al Qaeda's attack on September 11, 2001, American intelligence analysts in the Embassy became concerned that an increase in chatter was a clue that al Qaeda was planning an attack on their embassy. At their request Bosnia arrested Bensayah Belkacem, the man they believed had made dozens of phone calls to Afghanistan and Pakistan, and five acquaintances of his. All six men were residents of Bosnia, who were born in Algeria. Five of the men were Bosnian citizens.

In January 2002, the Supreme Court of Bosnia ruled that there was no evidence to hold the six men, ordered the charges dropped and the men released. American forces, including troops who were part of a 3,000 man American peace-keeping contingent in Bosnia were waiting for the six men upon their release from Bosnia custody, and transported them to Guantanamo.

Identity

Captive 10005 is named inconsistently on various official Department of Defense documents.

Combatant Status Review Tribunal

Initially the Bush Presidency asserted that they could withhold all the protections of the Geneva Conventions to captives from the war on terror. This policy was challenged before the Judicial branch. Critics argued that the USA could not evade its obligation to conduct competent tribunals to determine whether captives are, or are not, entitled to the protections of prisoner of war status.

Subsequently the Department of Defense instituted the Combatant Status Review Tribunals. The Tribunals, however, were not authorized to determine whether the captives were lawful combatants -- rather they were merely empowered to make a recommendation as to whether the captive had previously been correctly determined to match the Bush Presidency's definition of an enemy combatant.

Summary of Evidence memo

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Lakhdar Boumediene's Combatant Status Review Tribunal, on 21 September 2004. The memo listed the following allegations against him:

a. The detainee is a supporter of al Qaida:
#The detainee is a native of Algeria who, since 1990, has repeatedly traveled to hotspots of regional conflict throughout the Middle East and Eastern Europe.
#The detainee has on multiple occasions provided subsistence to Bensayah Belkacem.
#Bensayah Belkacem is a known al Qaida operative.
#The detainee has given conflicting statements as to the nature of his association with Balkacem.
#The detainee admitted retaining and financing legal representation for a known al Qaida operative after that operative's arrest for terrorist activities.

Transcript

There is no record that Lakhdar Boumediene chose to participate in his Combatant Status Review Tribunal.

Boumediene v. Bush

Lakhdar Boumediene is one of the captives who had a writ of habeas corpus submitted on his behalf. The Department of Defense released fifteen pages of documents prepared for his Combatant Status Review Tribunal.

Boumediene v. Bush and Al Odah v. United States were heard before the Supreme Court of the United States on December 5 2007 and decided on June 12 2008.

Administrative Review Board hearings

Detainees who were determined to have been properly classified as "enemy combatants" were scheduled to have their dossier reviewed at annual Administrative Review Board hearings. The Administrative Review Boards weren't authorized to review whether a detainee qualified for POW status, and they weren't authorized to review whether a detainee should have been classified as an "enemy combatant".

They were authorized to consider whether a detainee should continue to be detained by the United States, because they continued to pose a threat -- or whether they could safely be repatriated to the custody of their home country, or whether they could be set free.

First annual Administrative Review Board

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Lakhdar Boumediene's first annual Administrative Review Board, on 30 November 2005. The memo listed factors for and against his continued detention.

The following primary factors favor continued detention:

a. Connections/Associations
#According to a cooperative and reliable source, the detainee was known to be once of an al Qaida member's closest associates in Bosnia.
#According to a foreign government service, the detainee is a suspected terrorist with ties to the Algerian Armed Islamic Group. He is also suspect of having links to Usama bin Laden's al Qaida Terrorist Organization.

b. Intent
A source states that as of late September 2001, the detainee planned to travel to Afghanistan as soon as an al Qaida member arrived to make receiving arrangements.

c. Detainee Actions and Statements
The detainee stated that he obtained Bosnia citizenship in September of 1998. He advised that he purchased the citizenship for 5,000 Deutsche Marks. He advised that it was legitimate citizenship, which was obtained by illegal means.

d. Other Relevant Data
#The detainee was an Algerian Army Border Guard from 1986 to 1988.
#In October 2001, the detainee was arrested along with three other individuals.
#During an investigation into the military service of the Algerian nationals, the Bosnian Federation Ministry of Defense found the detainee's Bosnian military records to be forged.

The following primary factors favor release or transfer:

a. The detainee stated that he did not support Usama Bin Laden's manipulation of Islam to gather support for his actions.
b. The detainee claims he had no association with Taliban or al Qaida forces.

Second annual Administrative Review Board

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Lakhdar Boumediene's second annual Administrative Review Board, on 20 October 2006. The memo listed factors for and against his continued detention.

The following primary factors favor continued detention:

a. Commitment
#The detainee stated he took a trip to Pakistan from October to November 1990, traveling from Algiers, Algeria to Tunisia, to Msocow, Russia, and on to Peshawar, Pakistan, via Karachi, Pakistan. The detainee stated approximately six months prior to his trip, he became more religious and attended a local mosque in his town.
#The detainee stated he went to Pakistan to help the Afghan refugees and orphans and also worked for the Islamic Hira Institute in Pakistan.
#The detainee stated he was employed from 1990 to 1993 by the Lejnat Aldawa nongovernmental organization in Bishawar, Pakistan and by the Red Crescent Society in Bosnia from 1997 to 2002.
#The detainee had Arabic language documents with the letterhead of Lajnat al Dawa al Islamiah]] in his possession when arrested. The English translation of the documents stated the detainee worked for the organization in Peshawar, Pakistan, as an administrator from 1 March 1993, until at least 24 May 1993.
#A source stated the detainee was a former Bosnian Mujahedin who had planned to travel to Afghanistan.

b. Training
The detainee stated his military service was as a border guard in the Algerian Army from 1986 to 1988.

c. Connections/Associations
#A source stated the detainee was known to be once of the closest associates of an al Qaida member in Bosnia.
#A source stated the detainee had resided in Bosnia in September 2001, was a suspected terrorist with ties to the Algerian Armed Islamic Group, and was also suspected of having links to Usama bin Laden's al Qaida terrorist organization.
#A source stated the detainee was a suspecte Armed Islamic Group member.
#A source described the Islamic Armed Group as an Islamic extremist group that aims to overthrow the secular Algerian regime and replace it with an Islamic state. The Islamic Armed Group began its violent activity in 1992.
#A source stated the detainee was part of a group of detained six Algerian nationals arrested on suspicion of terrorist activities.

'''d. Other Relevant Data
#The detainee stated that he left Pakistan in December 1993 and went to Yemen.
#The detainee stated he left Yemen in July 1994 and went to Tirana, Albania, got a job working at the Abu Dahbi Welfare Organization , and worked there until he left Albania in April 1997. The detainee stated the Abu Dahbi Welfar Organization became the United Arab Emirates Red Crescent, and in April 1997 he was transferred through the United Arab Emirates Red Crescent to Sarajevo, Bosnia.
#The detainee stated he illegally obtained recognized Bosnian citizenship in September 1998.
#A source stated when the detainee was arrested the detainee had a photocopy of an article from the Croatian paper Globus detailing an attack against the United States Information Service Office in Pristina, Kosovo, in August 1998.

The following primary factors favor release or transfer:

a. The detainee claims he had no association with Taliban or al Qaida forces.
b. The detainee denied having any knowledge of the attacks in the United States prior to their execution on 11 September 2001, and also denied knowledge of any rumors or plans of future attacks on the United States or United States interests.
c. The detainee stated he is not a member of al Qaida or the Armed Islamic Group, nor is anyone he knows.
d. The detainee stated he knows no one in the Armed Islamic Group, nor does he want to. The detainee stated he has heard of the organization in the newspapers and he considers it an epidemic. The detainee indicated he has never been approached by any members of the Armed Islamic Group.
e. The detainee stated he did not support Osama bin Laden's manipulation of Islam to gather support for his actions, and he stated he never wished to meet a man who would perpetrate horrific acts against humanity like the terrorist actions perpetrated by Osama bin Laden.
f. The detainee stated, if released, he would return to Algeria or Bosnia to be with his family.
g. The detainee stated, if released, he would not return to a position with a humanitarian organization such as the Red Crescent.

References

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