Spain seeks Guantanamo inmates

A leading Spanish anti-terrorism judge has called for the extradition of four prisoners held at the US base at Guantanamo in Cuba because they are suspected of links to an al-Qaida cell, court sources said on Monday.

    Judge Baltazar Garzon wants to question four terrorist suspects

    Judge Baltazar Garzon of Spain's highest criminal tribunal has applied to the Spanish government to seek the extradition of Hamid Abd al-Rahman, alias Hamido – the only Spanish national held at Guantanamo – Lahcen Ikassrien, alias Chej Hasan, Khamiel Abd al-Latif al-Banna, alias Abu Anas, and Umar Deghayes.

    The nationalities of the last three were not given.

    Spanish authorities wish to question the four in connection with being members of a terrorist organisation.

    Spanish jurisdiction

    The accused are being detained at the Guantanamo base, but since there is evidence against them in Spain "the Spanish government is legally required to seek their extradition without delay," Garzon said in his submission.

    The mother of Hamido urges the
    release of her son from Cuba

    He said Spanish jurisdiction applied because the offences with which the four are charged were committed at least partly in Spain, inside an organisation that had recruited and indoctrinated them for work with al-Qaida.

    The al-Qaida cell run by Imad al-Din Barakat, alias Abu Dahdah, a Spaniard of Syrian origin, was smashed by Spanish police in November 2001, two months after the 11 September attacks in the US.
    Last September, Garzon indicted 35 men for having alleged links to or membership of al-Qaeda, including Taysir Aluni, a journalist working for Aljazeera.

    Released on bail in October on medical grounds, Aluni, who holds Spanish citizenship, has said Spanish justice will prove him innocent.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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