Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al-Rahizi

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Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi
Ali Ahmad Muhammad al-Razihi's Guantanamo identity portrait -- his tan uniform signifies JTF-GTMO considered him a compliant captive.
Ali Ahmad Muhammad al-Razihi's Guantanamo identity portrait -- his tan uniform signifies JTF-GTMO considered him a compliant captive.
Born 1979
Ta'iz, Yemen
Nationality Yemen

Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi is a citizen of Yemen held in extrajudicial detention in the United States Guantanamo Bay detainment camps, in Cuba.[1] Al Rahizi's Guantanamo Internee Security Number is 45. Joint Task Force Guantanamo counter-terrorism analysts reports he was born on October 13 1979, in Ta'iz, Yemen.

Combatant Status Review Tribunal

Combatant Status Review Tribunal notice read to a Guantanamo captive. During the period July 2004 through March 2005 a Combatant Status Review Tribunal was convened to make a determination whether they had been correctly classified as an "enemy combatant". Participation was optional. The Department of Defense reports that 317 of the 558 captives who remained in Guantanamo, in military custody, attended their Tribunals.

Initially the Bush administration asserted that they could withhold all the protections of the Geneva Conventions to captives from the war on terror. This policy was challenged before the Judicial branch. Critics argued that the USA could not evade its obligation to conduct competent tribunals to determine whether captives are, or are not, entitled to the protections of prisoner of war status.

Subsequently the Department of Defense instituted the Combatant Status Review Tribunals. The Tribunals, however, were not authorized to determine whether the captives were lawful combatants -- rather they were merely empowered to make a recommendation as to whether the captive had previously been correctly determined to match the Bush administration's definition of an enemy combatant.

Summary of Evidence memo

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi's Combatant Status Review Tribunal, on 23 September 2004.[2] The memo listed the following allegations against him:

a. The detainee is a member of al Qaida:
  1. The detainee has been identified as a bodyguard for Usama Bin Laden.
b. The detainee supported military operations against the United States or its coalition partners.
  1. Detainee was the Amir at the "small mudafah in Kandahar."
  2. The mudafah in Kandahar billeted fighters pending further training or operational assignment.
  3. The mudafah was operated by the Operations and Logistics elements of al Qaida.

Transcript

According to his Combatant Status Review Tribunal Decision Cover Sheet Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi did not chose to participate in his Combatant Status Review Tribunal, which convened on September 29 2004.[3]

Conclusion

Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi's Tribunal based its conclusion on classified evidence.[4] His Tribunal unanimously concluded that he had properly been deternmined to have been an "enemy combatant".

Ali Ahmed Mohammed Al Rezehi v. George W. Bush

A writ of habeas corpus, Ali Ahmed Mohammed Al Rezehi v. George W. Bush, was submitted on Ali Ahmed Mohammed Al Rezehi's behalf.[5] In response, on 14 October 2004 the Department of Defense released 26 pages of unclassified documents related to his Combatant Status Review Tribunal.

Earned mention in the "No-hearing hearings" study

According to the study entitled, No-hearing hearings, there was an anomaly in Al Rahizi's record.[6] Al Rahizi's Personal Representative met with him for twenty minutes on September 23 2004. Al Rahizi's Tribunal convened on September 28 2004, without Al Rahizi being present.

The study quoted from the Summary of the Basis for Tribunal Decision:[6]

"The detainee understood the Tribunal Proceedings, but chose not to participate . . . The Tribunal questioned the personal representative closely on this matter and was satisfied that the personal representative had made every effort to ensure that the detainee had made an informed decision."

The study then commented:[6]

"The Tribunal’s close questioning of the personal representative is problematic because the form the personal representative presented to the Tribunal stated that the he had neither read nor left a written copy of the procedures with the detainee."

Administrative Review Board hearing

Hearing room where Guantanamo captive's annual Administrative Review Board hearings convened for captives whose Combatant Status Review Tribunal had already determined they were an "enemy combatant".[7]

Detainees who were determined to have been properly classified as "enemy combatants" were scheduled to have their dossier reviewed at annual Administrative Review Board hearings. The Administrative Review Boards weren't authorized to review whether a detainee qualified for POW status, and they weren't authorized to review whether a detainee should have been classified as an "enemy combatant".

They were authorized to consider whether a detainee should continue to be detained by the United States, because they continued to pose a threat -- or whether they could safely be repatriated to the custody of their home country, or whether they could be set free.

The factors for and against continuing to detain Al Rahizi were among the 121 that the Department of Defense released on March 3 2006.[8]

First annual Administrative Review Board

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi's second annual Administrative Review Board, on 31 January 2005.[9] The memo listed factors for and against his continued detention.

The following primary factors favor continued detention:

a. Commitment
  1. The detainee was the Amir at the "small mudafah in Kandahar."
  2. The mudafah in Kandahar billeted fighters pending further training or operational assignment.
  3. The mudafah was operated by the Operations and Logistics elements of al Qaida.
  4. The detainee met Ali al Adeni in a discussion group held at the Jama al Dawa mosque in Taaz, Yemen.
  5. Ali al Adeni was known for spreading support for jihad.
  6. The detainee gave his passport to Ali al Adeni, who returned his same passport to the detainee along with a Pakistani visa.
  7. The detainee is a Sunni Muslim and agrees with the Taliban government where the Islamic law codes are enforced.
  8. The detainee was captured on 15 December 2001, with thirty suspected al Qaida members.
b. Training
  1. The detainee was identified at al Farouq in May 2000; he was in the Teknek group led by Hamza al Zubair.
  2. Hamza al Zubair was the primary liaison between Khalid Shaykh Muhammad and Hasan ba Attash al-Dini.
c. Connections/Associations
  1. The detainee has been identified as a bodyguard for Usama Bin Laden.

The following primary factors favor release or transfer:

a.

The detainee claims to have been in Afghanistan as a religious missionary.

b.

The detainee stated he was unaware of any Taliban activity in the village of Showradab, Afghanistan where he taught the Koran to 18 people.

c.

The detainee denied staying at a guesthouse in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

d.

The detainee denied any knowledge of the attacks in the United States prior to their execution on September 11, 2001.

e.

The detainee denied knowledge of any rumors or plans of future attacks on the United States or United States interests.

f.

The detainee denied knowledge of the planning of internal uprisings at the Guantanamo detention facility.

g.

The detainee stated he did not know Usama Bin Laden.

h.

The detainee believes the investigators have him mixed up with someone else.

Transcript

There is no record that Ali Ahmed Mohammed Al Razehi participated in his first annual Review. An affidavit his brother sent to Guantanamo was included with the ARB transcripts.[10] According to his brother their 65 year old father supports their family by selling vegetables from a cart. Ali Ahmed Mohmmed Al Razehi finished high school. He then went and fulfilled his obligatory national military service. He disappeared soon afterwards.

According to his brother[10]:

  • Everyone in our area loved him because he had such a good sense of humor. He used to make fun of the accents of Aden people in a particularly amusing way. He also had a very beautiful and polite manner.
  • I do not believe that my brother would have done anything criminal or violent. He was not gone for very long, and would not have changed that much. He could never harm anyone. His religion forbids him ot harm or kill anyone and he took that very seriously.

Second annual Administrative Review Board

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi's second annual Administrative Review Board, on 19 July 2006.[11] The memo listed factors for and against his continued detention.

The following primary factors favor continued detention:

a. Commitment
  1. The detainee has stated that he did not go to Afghanistan to fight. The detainee stated that he went to Afghanistan to teach the Koran because the Imam at his mosque told him that the Afghans were using magic and were not following the teachings of Islam.
  2. The detainee met a Yemeni in 1997 who spread support for jihad. In 1999, the detainee was approached again by the Yemeni and told that he should go to Afghanistan to teach the Koran.
  3. The Yemeni provided the detainee with a Pakistani visa, 450 United States Dollars, round-trip airline tickets and an address to a hotel near Karachi, Pakistan.
  4. The detainee left Yemen and proceeded to Karachi, Pakistan. After several days in Karachi, the detainee traveled to Quetta, Pakistan and eventually met a man who brought him to Shurandam, Afghanistan.
b. Training
The detainee has been identified as someone who trained at al Farouq at the end of May 2000.
c. Connections/Associations
  1. The detainee taught the Koran to Afghan children at the Abu Bakur al Sadiq mosque in Shurandam [sic], Afghanistan. The detainee worked directly for the mosque Imam.
  2. The detainee was informed of the war in Afghanistan from the Imam of Shoorandab [sic], Afghanistan, in late 2001. The Imam suggested that the detainee return to Yemen for his own safety.
  3. The detainee decided to leave Afghanistan when the war with America got too close. The detainee traveled from Shurandam, Afghanistan to Ghazni, Afghanistan. From Ghazni, the detainee then traveled to Khowst, Afghanistan and then traveled by foot for two days to a small town.
  4. At the small town, the detainee joined approximately 30 other Arabs who had assembled to flee into Pakistan. The group of Arabs traveled for eight days and was finally arrested on the Pakistan border by Pakistan authorities.
  5. The detainee has been identified as an Usama bin Laden bodyguard and also that he was seen at the Kandahar, Afghanistan guest house.
d. Other Relevant Data
  1. The detainee was identified as someone who was in custody in the Kandahar, Afghanistan facility.
  2. The detainee was transferred into United States custody on 26 December 2001.

The following primary factors favor release or transfer:

a.

The detainee stated that he has never received any type of military training and the only weapon he knows how to use is the Kalashnikov rifle that he learned about when he was young.

b.

The detainee denied having any knowledge of the attacks in the United States prior to their execution on 11 September 2001.

c.

The detainee denied knowledge of any rumors of plans of future attacks on the United States or United States interests.

d.

The detainee denied any knowledge of planning of internaal uprisings at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.


References

  1. OARDEC (May 15 2006). "List of Individuals Detained by the Department of Defense at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba from January 2002 through May 15, 2006". United States Department of Defense. http://www.dod.mil/news/May2006/d20060515%20List.pdf. Retrieved 2007-09-29. 
  2. OARDEC (23 September 2004). "Summary of Evidence for Combatant Status Review Tribunal -- Al Rahizi, Ali Ahmad Muhammad". United States Department of Defense. pp. page 54. http://www.dod.mil/pubs/foi/detainees/csrt_arb/000001-000100.pdf#54. Retrieved 2008-01-13. 
  3. OARDEC (September 29 2004). "Combatant Status Review Tribunal Decision Cover Sheet". United States Department of Defense. pp. page 7. http://wid.ap.org/documents/detainees/alialrezehi.pdf#7. Retrieved 2008-01-14. 
  4. Unclassified Summary of basis for Tribunal decision from pages 8-10 of Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi's Combatant Status Review Tribunal - September 29 2004
  5. "Ali Ahmed Mohammed Al Rezehi v. George W. Bush". United States Department of Defense. 14 October 2004. pp. pages 58-74. http://www.dod.mil/pubs/foi/detainees/csrt_arb/publicly_filed_CSRT_records_370-443.pdf#58. Retrieved 2008-01-14. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Mark Denbeaux, Joshua Denbeaux, David Gratz, John Gregorek, Matthew Darby, Shana Edwards, Shane Hartman, Daniel Mann, Megan Sassaman and Helen Skinner. "No-hearing hearings". Seton Hall University School of Law. p. 17. http://law.shu.edu/news/final_no_hearing_hearings_report.pdf. Retrieved 2007-04-02. 
  7. Spc Timothy Book (Friday March 10 2006). "Review process unprecedented". JTF-GTMO Public Affairs Office. pp. pg 1. http://www.jtfgtmo.southcom.mil/wire/WirePDF/v6/TheWire-v6-i049-10MAR2006.pdf#1. Retrieved 2007-10-10. 
  8. Factors for and against the continued detention (.pdf) of Ali Ahmad Muhammad Al Rahizi Administrative Review Board - page 38
  9. OARDEC (31 January 2005). "Unclassified Summary of Evidence for Administrative Review Board in the case of Al Rahizi, Ali Ahmad Muhammad". United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 38-40. http://www.dod.mil/pubs/foi/detainees/csrt_arb/ARB_Round_1_Factors_000944-001045.pdf#38. Retrieved 2008-01-14. 
  10. 10.0 10.1 OARDEC (10 April 2004). "Affidavit of Abdallah Ahmed Mohammad Al Rahezi". United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 1-2. http://www.dod.mil/pubs/foi/detainees/csrt_arb/ARB_Transcript_Set_17_22822-23051.pdf#1. Retrieved 2008-01-14. 
  11. OARDEC (19 July 2006). "Unclassified Summary of Evidence for Administrative Review Board in the case of Al Rahizi, Ali Ahmad Muhammad". United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 86-88. http://www.dod.mil/pubs/foi/detainees/csrt_arb/ARB_Round_2_Factors_1-99.pdf#86. Retrieved 2008-01-13.