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Group Presses US Military on Jailed Journalists
Published on Tuesday, January 24, 2006 by Reuters
Group Presses US Military on Jailed Journalists

NEW YORK - The Committee to Protect Journalists on Monday called for the U.S. military to free two journalists, one held without charge in Iraq and the other, the media rights group said, detained at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The New York-based group also demanded an explanation from the U.S. military for holding a Reuters TV cameraman for eight months without charges until his release on Sunday.

Samir Mohammed Noor, a 30-year-old Iraqi freelancer, was freed from military custody after being held in Baghdad's Abu Ghraib prison and then at Camp Bucca in southern Iraq.

"Samir Mohammed Noor should not have been jailed for eight months without charge, explanation, or due process," CPJ Executive Director Ann Cooper said in a statement.

"The military owes an explanation for this open-ended and unsubstantiated detention," she said. "U.S. officials should also credibly explain the basis for the other detentions or release those journalists immediately," Cooper said.

The CPJ said the military continued to hold without charge at least one journalist in Iraq and another at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, where the United States keeps foreign detainees captured in its war against terrorism.

The military does not confirm the names of most of those detained at Guantanamo.

Abdul Ameer Younis Hussein, an Iraqi cameraman working for CBS News, was taken into custody after being wounded by fire from U.S. forces as he filmed clashes in Mosul in northern Iraq on April 5 last year, the CPJ said.

It said Sami Muhyideen al-Haj, a 35-year-old Sudanese national and assistant cameraman for Al-Jazeera, was detained by Pakistani forces after he and an Al-Jazeera reporter tried to re-enter southern Afghanistan at a border crossing in Pakistan in December 2001 and was being held in Guantanamo.

Two Reuters journalists from the Iraqi city of Ramadi, cameraman Ali al-Mashhadani and reporter Majed Hameed, who also works for Al-Arabiya television, were freed on January 15 after five and four months in custody in Iraq respectively.

Copyright © 2006 Reuters


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