Defiant Khadr says he will boycott ‘sham process’

Tuesday, July 13, 2010
ANNA MEHLER PAPERNY

GUANTANAMO BAY, CUBA — After eight years in U.S. custody, Omar Khadr had the floor.

Appearing in a courtroom at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the Canadian terror suspect publicly explained himself in his own words for the first time Monday morning, condemning the military commission set to try him as a “sham process” so divorced from legal norms that he’s as well trained to defend himself as any lawyer.

“The unfairness of the rules will make a person so depressed that he will admit to any allegations or take a plea offer that will satisfy the U.S. government,” he said.

Guantanamo Bay’s youngest inmate, and its only Canadian, spoke more forcefully and at greater length than ever before. The 23-year-old expressed his contempt not only for the military tribunal, but for a plea deal offered to him within the past month.

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Khadr’s move throws his hearings into doubt

Monday, July 12, 2010 – Globe and Mail
ANNA MEHLER PAPERNY

GUANTANAMO BAY U.S. NAVAL STATION, CUBA — In a putty-coloured air-traffic-centre-turned-courtroom Monday morning, the fate of Omar Khadr’s military trial, and the evidence the prosecution can present, will be up to Omar Khadr and his judge.

Military Justice Colonel Patrick Parrish will call on the Canadian charged with terrorism to confirm a statement he submitted Wednesday firing the American lawyers who have been conducting his defence at the military tribunal here.

That could leave the 23-year-old, who was 15 and severely wounded when U.S. forces apprehended him in Afghanistan and charged him with murder and supporting terrorism, to fend for himself in court.

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