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Ahmed Muhammed Haza Al Darbi
Ahmed Al Darbi.jpg
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Photo taken by employees of the International Committee of the Red Cross, and "released by the family".
Born January 9, 1975(1975-01-09)
Ta'if, Saudi Arabia
Detained at Guantanamo
ISN 768
Charge(s) charges referred to the Convening authority, but not yet laid

Ahmed Muhammed Haza Al Darbi is a citizen of Saudi Arabia held in extrajudicial detention in the United States Guantanamo Bay detainment camps, in Cuba.[1] His Guantanamo Internment Serial Number is 768. According to the official list of detainees, released on May 15 2006, Al Darbi was born on January 9 1975, in Ta'if, Saudi Arabia.



The brother-in-law of Khalid al-Mihdhar, Al-Darbi was captured in Azerbaijan and was renditioned into Afghanistan.[2] There he was held in the Bagram Collection Point, while it was still under control of Alpha Company of the 519th Military Intelligence Battalion who routinely beat their captives, resulting in the deaths of two prisoners on December 4, 2001 and December 10, 2001. Al-Darbi identified Damien M. Corsetti, a soldier nicknamed "the King of Torture" by his fellow GIs, as one of his abusers.[3]

Corsetti's lawyer asserts that Al Darbi's claims of abuse are not credible. Corsetti's lawyers claim al Darbi repeats the meme al Qaeda training manuals instruct captives to lie about abuse, and asserts that Al Darbi is following those instructions.

Department of Defense spokesmen have announced that Al Darbi will not be allowed to testify at Corsetti's court martial.[4]

On December 21, 2007 charges against Ahmed Muhammed Haza Al Darbi were referred to the convening authority for the Office of Military Commissions.[5][6][7 ]


Captive 768 was identified inconsistently on official Department of Defense documents:

  • Captive 768 was identified as Ahmed Muhammed Haza Al Darbi on the Summary of Evidence memo prepared for his Combatant Status Review Tribunal, on 23 September 2004, and on three official lists of captives' names.[1] [8][9 ]
  • Captive 768 was identified as Ahmed Mohammed Ahmed Haza Al Darbi on the charge sheet prepared in January 2007.[7 ]
  • Captive 768 was identified as Ahmad Mohammad Al Darbi on a habeas corpus petition reinitiated on July 18, 2008.[10]

Combatant Status Review

Initially the Bush administration asserted they could withhold the protections of the Geneva Conventions from captives in the War on Terror, while critics argued the Conventions obligated the United States to conduct competent tribunals to determine the status of prisoners.[11] Subsequently the Department of Defense instituted Combatant Status Review Tribunals, to determine whether the captives met the new definition of an "enemy combatant".

Detainees do not have the right to a lawyer before the CSRTs or to access the evidence against them. The CSRTs are not bound by the rules of evidence that would apply in court, and the government’s evidence is presumed to be “genuine and accurate.”[12]

From July 2004 through March 2005, a CSRT was convened to make a determination whether each captive had been correctly classified as an "enemy combatant". Ahmed al-Darbi was among the one-third of prisoners for whom there was no indication they chose to participate in their tribunals.[13]

In the landmark case Boumediene v. Bush, the U.S. Supreme Court found that CSRTs are not an adequate substitute for the constitutional right to challenge one's detention in court, in part because they do not have the power to order detainees released.[14] The Court also found that "there is considerable risk of error in the tribunal’s findings of fact."[15]

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for the tribunal, listing the alleged facts that led to his detainment. His memo accused him of the following:


a. Detainee is associated with the Taliban and Al-Qaida.
  1. Detainee is an admitted member of Al-Qaida.
  2. In 1996, detainee received weapons training at the Al Farouq training camp in Afghanistan. He eventually became and instructor and logistician at the Al Farouq Camp in Afghanistan, where he instructed others on the Kalashnikov [sic], PK machineguns, and various pistols.
  3. Detainee met privatedly with Usama Bin Laden in 1996 or 1997.
  4. Detainee was involved in an Al-Qaida plot to use small ships loaded with explosives to attack oil tankers in the Straits of Hormuz.

Administrative Review Board

Captives whose CSRT labelled them "enemy combatants" were scheduled for annual Administrative Review Board hearings. These hearings were designed to judge whether the captive still posed a threat if repatriated to their home country.[16]In September 2007 the Department of Defense released all the Summary of Evidence memos prepared for the Administrative Review Boards convened in 2005 or 2006.[17][18 ] There was no record that an ARB had been convened to review his detention.

United States v. Ahmed Mohammed Ahmed Haza Al Darbi

On December 21, 2007 charges against Ahmed Muhammed Haza Al Darbi were referred to Susan Crawford, who approved them to continue to trial.[5][6][7 ]

"Conspiring with others, to attack civilians, to murder in violation of the law of war, to destroy property in violation of the law of war, to hazard a vessel and to commit terrorism, and Providing Material Support to Terrorism."[7 ]

  • he had trained at the Jihad Wahl training camp;
  • he transferred funds to finance the plot to attack shipping;
  • he purchased a vessel, registered in Sao Tome, to use in the attacks.

In April 2008 he announced that he refused to participate in the tribunal as he believed it lacked legitimacy, and dismissed his military lawyer Brian Broyles who called the refusal a "reasonable decision".[2]

According to the Associated Press, at a hearing in December 2008 he had "held up a photo of President Barack Obama as a sign of hope."[19 ] According to the Associated Press, a note he wrote to his lawyer about Obama said he could: ""earn back the legitimacy the United States has lost in the eyes of the world,"

Carol Rosenberg, writing in the Miami Herald, reported that Commission President James Pohl scheduled a hearing for May 27, 2009, to rule on how much of the evidence against Al Darbi was coerced through torture.[20]

At a hearing on September 23 2009 his Presiding Officer of his military commission agreed to a further sixty day delay.[19 ] His lawyer Ramzi Kassem told reporters after the hearing that Al Darbi had written a brief note, addressed to President Obama, that he had hoped to read aloud at the hearing. Kassem read the note aloud to reporters. The Associated Press quoted passages from the note.


  1. ^ a b OARDEC (2006-05-15). "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. Retrieved 2007-09-29.  
  2. ^ a b Andy Worthington (2008-04-20). "The US military’s shameless propaganda over Guantánamo’s 9/11 trials". Archived from the original on 2009-089-23.  
  3. ^ Trial under way for soldier in Afghan prisoner abuse case, Star Telegram, May 30, 2006
  4. ^ Soldier pleads not guilty in detainee harm, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, May 28, 2006
  5. ^ a b "Guantanamo Detainee Charged". United States Department of Defense. December 21, 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-22.  
  6. ^ a b "Guantanamo Bay detainee accused in terror plot". CNN. December 21, 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-22.  
  7. ^ a b c d Office of Military Commissions (January 2007). "MC Form 458 Jan 2007 - Charges in United States v. Ahmed Mohammed Ahmed Haza Al Darbi" (PDF). United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 1-6. Retrieved 2007-12-23.  
  8. ^ a b OARDEC (23 September 2004). "Summary of Evidence for Combatant Status Review Tribunal - Al Darbi, Ahmed Muhammed Haza". United States Department of Defense. pp. page 8. Retrieved 2007-12-19.  
  9. ^ OARDEC (July 17, 2007). "Index for Combatant Status Review Board unclassified summaries of evidence" (PDF). United States Department of Defense. Retrieved 2007-09-29.  
  10. ^ Paul C. Curnin (2008-07-18). "Guantanamo Bay Detainee Litigation: Doc 129 -- STATUS REPORT FOR AL DARBY V. BUSH, CIVIL ACTION NO. 05-2371 (RCL)". United States Department of Justice. Retrieved 2008-08-18.  
  11. ^ "Q&A: What next for Guantanamo prisoners?". BBC News. 2002-01-21. Retrieved 2008-11-24.   mirror
  12. ^ Elsea, Jennifer K. (July 20, 2005). "Detainees at Guantanamo Bay: Report for Congress" (PDF). Congressional Research Service. Retrieved 2007-11-10.  
  13. ^ OARDEC, Index to Transcripts of Detainee Testimony and Documents Submitted by Detainees at Combatant Status Review Tribunals Held at Guantanamo Between July 2004 and March 2005, September 4, 2007
  14. ^ "Boumediene v. Bush". June 12, 2008. "... the procedural protections afforded to the detainees in the CSRT hearings ... fall well short of the procedures and adversarial mechanisms that would eliminate the need for habeas corpus review."  
  15. ^ "Boumediene v. Bush". June 12, 2008.  
  16. ^ Book, Spc. Timothy. The Wire (JTF-GTMO Public Affairs Office), "Review process unprecedented", March 10, 2006
  17. ^ OARDEC, Index to Summaries of Detention-Release Factors for ARB Round One, August 9, 2007
  18. ^ OARDEC, Index of Summaries of Detention-Release Factors for ARB Round Two, July 17, 2007
  19. ^ a b Ben Fox (2009-09-23). "Guantanamo prisoner says he's lost hope in Obama". Associated Press. Archived from the original on 2009-09-23.  
  20. ^ Carol Rosenberg (2009-05-10). "Judge won't delay May 27 war court session". Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 2009-05-12.  


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