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Feb 11, 2013

Hearing for 9-11 suspects halted to prevent eavesdropping

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – A pretrial hearing for five prisoners accused of plotting the September 11 attacks was halted on Monday so technicians could tinker with courtroom microphones to prevent eavesdropping on confidential attorney-client conversations.

The war crimes court at the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base convened for a little over an hour and then recessed until Tuesday to address defense lawyers’ concerns that the courtroom microphones are sensitive enough to pick up conversations among themselves and with their clients.

Feb 10, 2013

U.S. trains for mass migration in Caribbean security drill

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – A simulated wave of Caribbean migrants sailed to the Guantanamo naval base this week for a training drill designed to prepare U.S. troops and security agencies who might someday have to handle the real thing.

The exercise is held every two years to prepare for a potential mass migration brought on by political upheaval or natural disaster in the region.

Feb 8, 2013

Doctors to review USS Cole suspect’s CIA detention records

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – CIA records documenting the waterboarding and interrogation of an alleged al Qaeda chieftain must be shown to the doctors who will decide whether he is mentally competent for trial on charges of conspiring to bomb a U.S. warship, a judge ordered.

The order, dated Thursday, ensures that the mental competency board will consider allegations that Saudi defendant Abd al Rahim al Nashiri was tortured during the four years he spent in secret CIA prisons, among other criteria.

Feb 5, 2013

Rip out Guantanamo microphones to prevent eavesdropping, judge says

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – A military judge on Monday suggested ripping out the defense table microphones to ease concerns that intelligence agents could be eavesdropping on confidential attorney-client conversations in the Guantanamo war crimes tribunal.

The judge also ordered that doctors examine Saudi defendant Abd al Rahim al Nashiri to determine whether his treatment in CIA custody had left him mentally competent to stand trial on charges of orchestrating a deadly attack on a U.S. warship.

Feb 5, 2013

Rip out Guantanamo microphones to prevent eavesdropping: judge

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – A military judge on Monday suggested ripping out the defense table microphones to ease concerns that intelligence agents could be eavesdropping on confidential attorney-client conversations in the Guantanamo war crimes tribunal.

The judge also ordered that doctors examine Saudi defendant Abd al Rahim al Nashiri to determine whether his treatment in CIA custody had left him mentally competent to stand trial on charges of orchestrating a deadly attack on a U.S. warship.

Feb 4, 2013

Guantanamo prisoner’s lawyer questions if CIA is monitoring conversations

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – Pretrial hearings for a Guantanamo prisoner accused of orchestrating a deadly attack on a U.S. warship were brought to a temporary standstill on Monday as defense lawyers raised concerns that intelligence agents were eavesdropping on confidential attorney-client conversations.

Lawyers representing Saudi captive Abd al Rahim al Nashiri said they had a duty to ensure those conversations are private and wanted to consult their bosses and bar associations about whether it would be an ethical violation for them to proceed without knowing who might be listening.

Feb 3, 2013

U.S. faces construction quandary at aging Guantanamo camp

NAVAL BASE, CUBA (Reuters) – The U.S. failure to shut down the detention camp at Guantanamo has Captain John Nettleton in a predicament.

As commander of the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in eastern Cuba, he is in charge of making sure the prisoners and the troops and contractors who work at the camp have proper facilities. The problem is that he has no idea how long they will be staying.

Jan 31, 2013

Judge orders end to secret censorship of Guantanamo court

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – A U.S. military judge on Thursday ordered the government to dismantle a monitoring system that let outside censors halt the public broadcast of hearings for Guantanamo prisoners accused of plotting the September 11 attacks.

The closed-circuit broadcast feed was cut for a few minutes during a pretrial hearing at the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base on Monday for the self-described mastermind of attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, and four co-defendants.

Jan 31, 2013

September 11 victims’ families and defendants’ lawyers meet in Guantanamo

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – Watching the U.S. military tribunal hearings for the men accused of plotting the September 11 attacks can be gut-wrenching for the victims’ families, some of whom are still receiving their relatives’ newly identified remains thanks to improved DNA testing unavailable a decade ago.

Some family visitors have said they are galled to see American lawyers, including some U.S. military lawyers paid with their tax money, fighting vigorously in court to safeguard the rights of what one called “these monsters.”

Jan 31, 2013

Remove secret censoring system from Guantanamo court, judge orders

NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – A U.S. military judge on Thursday ordered the government to immediately dismantle the monitoring system that let outside censors halt the public broadcast of hearings for the Guantanamo prisoners accused of plotting the September 11 attacks.

“It is the judge that controls the courtroom,” said the judge, Army Colonel James Pohl. “This is the last time … any other third party will be permitted to unilaterally decide that the broadcast should be suspended.”

    • About Jane

      "I'm a correspondent in Miami. Since January 2002, I've made dozens of trips to the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval base to cover the detention operations and ongoing war crimes tribunals. I've covered hurricanes, crimes and corruption, elections and topics ranging from orange crop diseases to shark attacks. I joined Reuters in 1994 as a municipal bond and public finance reporter."
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