Guantanamo translator gets partial respite

An Arab US Air Force translator who worked at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp has had three charges against him dropped.

    Al-Halabi is one of four men charged for their work in Guantanamo

    Air Force spokesman Larry Clavette said that one charge of espionage against Senior Airman Ahmad al-Halabi, 23, was dropped, as well as

    an allegation that he aided the enemy and wrongfully e-mailed detainee information.

    But he added: "A number of very significant charges remain referred against him. The government fully intends to prosecute."

    Al-Halabi, who is of Syrian descent, has denied the charges. He worked as a translator at Guantanamo for nine months.

    A resident of Detroit, Michigan, al-Halabi was arrested on 23 July and accused of carrying jail maps, letters and other sensitive documents

    away from Guantanamo, where suspected al-Qaida and Taliban members have been detained.

    Charges still pending against al-Halabi include espionage, failure to obey an order, retaining documents without authority, making false official

    statements and executing a fraudulent credit application scheme.

    The spokesman said it would be "inappropriate" to discuss the specific reasons for the three dropped charges .

    Al-Halabi is expected to go on trial at the Travis Air Force Base in northern California next year.

    He is one of four men, including another Arabic translator and a Muslim chaplain, charged in connection with their work at Guantanamo.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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