The case of an Al-Qaida commander named Abd al Hadi al Iraqi will be discussed between judge and lawyers not at Gitmo this week, but in a closed session near the Pentagon.
Navy Commander Ms Sarah Higgins, the military commission's spokeswoman, has confirmed that the hearing in question is the first pretrial hearing by a military commission's judge outside of Guantánamo.
Judge Marine Colonel Mr Peter Rubin scheduled the closed national security session given the unusual medical circumstances involving the captive, who’s had spine surgery, at military commissions headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia. Neither the captive nor the public will be allowed to watch it.
Mr Hadi stands accused of leading an Al-Qaida unit that set off roadside bombs against American troops and CIA contractors and instructing Taliban forces to carry out suicide attacks and ambushes. All acts took place after the United States invaded Afghanistan in 2001.
Attorney Mr Adam Thurschwell claims the extraordinary circumstances are needed as Mr Hadi is recuperating from a series of emergency spinal surgeries, something which he blames on the treatment his client received ‘a decade of medical mistreatment’.
According to his defence team, camp authorities at Gitmo only scheduled the emergency surgery after he lost feeling in his legs and became incontinent.
The US State Department wanted poster at the time of his capture said:
“Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi is one of Usama bin Laden’s top global deputies, personally chosen by bin Laden to monitor al Qaeda operations in Iraq. Al-Hadi was the former Internal Operations Chief for al Qaeda. He has been associated with numerous attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan and has been known to facilitate communication between al Qaeda in Iraq and al Qaeda. “
“Al-Hadi rose to the rank of Major in Saddam Hussein’s army before moving to Afghanistan to fight against the Soviet Union. He has a reputation for being a skilled, intelligent, and experienced commander and is an extremely well respected al Qaeda leader. He has commanded numerous terrorist training camps in Afghanistan.”