[Pnews] US must release files proving innocence of former Guantanamo detainee, say lawyers

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Fri Sep 25 10:29:34 EDT 2015


*US must release files proving innocence of former Guantanamo detainee, 
say lawyers*

Lawyers at human rights NGO Reprieve yesterday filed an emergency motion 
demanding the US government release information which could exonerate a 
former Guantanamo detainee facing the possibility of charges in Morocco.

Younous Chekkouri, 47, was transferred to his native Morocco last week. 
He has been detained ever since and the prosecution in Morocco announced 
on Wednesday that he is now facing the possibility of charges of 
‘attempting to disrupt the internal security of the country.’

It is believed that these charges are based on allegations made years 
ago by the US – almost every one of which was dropped during Younous’ 
habeas corpus proceedings in federal court. Yet almost all the files 
from the case remain held under seal by a Washington D.C. court. Without 
the files being released, Younous’ lawyers will not be able to defend 
him against the possible Moroccan charges.

Reprieve first began asking the U.S. government to release the files in 
2009, and in 2011 presented a “priority list” of thirteen documents. In 
the nearly four years since, the government has released only one of the 
requested files. In the rules governing Guantanamo proceedings, the US 
is obliged to produce public versions of all filings. The emergency 
motion filed yesterday demands that the government make available all 
remaining information by October 1st.

The US government cleared Younous for release from Guantanamo in 2010, a 
process involving unanimous agreement by six US federal agencies - 
including the CIA, FBI, and Departments of State and Defense – that he 
poses no threat to the US or anyone else.

*Cori Crider, attorney for Younous and a director at human rights NGO 
Reprieve*, said: “The Americans' spurious allegations against Younous 
have already collapsed once when examined in US federal court and it is 
entirely unfair for him to face any further charges. Yet Younous is now 
living a Groundhog Day from hell where he may face yet more years of 
wrongful imprisonment because the US has failed to release information 
that I could use, this time in a Moroccan court, to prove his innocence 
yet again. So we are now forced to fight tooth and nail for information 
that should have been released years ago.”

ENDS

1. For further information, please contact Reprieve's press office: + 44 
(0) 207 553 8161 or in the USA 00 (1) 917 855 8064

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