Thursday, 23 April 2009

Two sons of Guantanamo detainee killed in Yemen

Two sons of Guantanamo detainee killed in Yemen

By Nasser Arrabyee/22/04/2009

Two sons of a Yemeni Guantanamo detainee were killed in their house in the Yemeni capital Sana'a late Wednesday after a hand grenade went off, family sources said.

"Omar 10, and Yousef, 11, were killed while they were playing with a hand grenade in the house this after noon," Nabil Al Heelah, brother of the Guantanamo detainee, Abdul Salam Al Heelah, told Gulf News without giving anymore details.

Earlier, Abdul Salam Al Heelah told his family over phone that he does not believe in the promises that he and other prisoners will be released home.

"If Ali Abdullah Saleh and Obama come over to tell me about their promises, this will never change any thing in my situation. They just talk," said Al Heelah, who has been languishing in Guantanamo since 2002.

The US President Barack Obama ordered on his second day in office last January the closure of the detention in one year. Two days later, the Yemeni President Saleh said that 94 Yemenis will return home within 90 days. Saleh said at the time a rehabilitation centre will be built for the returnees.

"If I had a European passport, all Europe would have demanded my release and return home," Al Heelah told his family in Sana'a over phone from the Cuban bay of Guantanamo in cooperation with the International Committee of the Red Cross, ICRC.

Al Heelah, who is one of about 100 Yemenis among the 250 detainees remaining in Guantanamo, criticized his Yemeni government for not working on their release.

"The investigators, translators, and lawyers make fun of the Yemeni government, they say it's a beggar," He said in the conversation which was recorded and distributed by the family to media.

"Whenever they ask the government to receive the Yemenis, they say give us 10 million dollars, they beg in our names , they degraded us and degraded themselves," said Al Heelah who was a businessman in Yemen before being lured to Egypt in 2002 where he was kidnapped to Guantanamo.

About the rehabilitation centre, which the two governments speak about as a condition for the release of the men, he said "If every Yemeni pays 1000 YR, they would build 1000 centres, and we would not need the Americans, people should tell the President Ali Abdullah Saleh"

"They keep me in prison without charges or trials, and now they speak about rehabilitation, what rehabilitation," he wondered.

The family sources said, the mother did not speak to her son in the recent conversation, because she gets sad when she speaks with him over phone especially after he told her in one of the previous telephone conversations " See you in paradise, mum"

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