Late yesterday came word that Sami al-Haj, the only confirmed journalist to be held in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, has been released. The Al Jazeera reporter and cameraman was arrested in December 2001 by Pakistani forces along the Afghan-Pakistani border while covering the U.S. led-offensive to unseat the Taliban. Al-Haj was taken into U.S. custody and, in June 2002, transported to Guantánamo Bay—where he was held, without charge, trial, or due process, for six years. The Pentagon has so far offered no explanation about al-Haj’s sudden release.
In the July/August 2007 issue of Columbia Journalism Review, Rachel Morris chronicled Al Haj’s experience in Guantánamo, including his struggles for due process and the hunger strike he began last January to protest his incarceration.
Read “Prisoner 345” here.