An Afghan detainee in Guantanamo has now been cleared for release after being in prison for 14 years.
A statement posted on a Pentagon website said that it was no longer necessary to detain the man known by the single name of Obaidullah.
U.S. forces captured Obaidullah during a raid in Afghanistan in July 2002 when he was about 19. They found about 20 inactivated land mines buried in a field near his home. Authorities later concluded he was part of a bomb cell linked to al-Qaida, an allegation his lawyers have denied.
According to the reports, he was charged in the military tribunals in September 2008 with conspiracy and providing material support for terrorism, which appeals courts have said can’t be charged as war crimes at Guantanamo for conduct that occurred before 2006. The government dismissed the charges in 2011 and his lawyers have been pressing for his release ever since.
Obaidullah appeared before the PRB in April, part of an Obama administration attempt to determine if some of the prisoners who have been held without charge can be released as part of the effort to close the prison in Cuba. There are 80 prisoners still held at Guantanamo, including 28 cleared for release.
Based on reporting by AP