Category Archive 'Abdullah Saleh al-Ajmi'

05 Jan 2010

Freed Guantanamo Prisoners Rejoin Jihad

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Said Ali al-Shihri, Ibrahim Suleiman al Rubaish (image ID not confirmed); Abdullah Saleh Ali al Ajmi; and Abdullah Mahsud thought the US was pretty stupid to let them go free to resume the fight

The London Times reports that early releases of detainees believed to be less dangerous resulted in a large number of cases of speedy returns to waging holy war against the West, sometimes in prominent leadership roles.

As the Obama Administration tries fulfilling its commitment to empty the prison facility at Guantanamo, prospective beneficiaries of repatriation will inevitably include precisely those detainees considered too obviously guilty and too certain to return to terrorist activities to be released earlier.

At least a dozen former Guantánamo Bay inmates have rejoined al-Qaeda to fight in Yemen, The Times has learnt, amid growing concern over the ability of the country’s Government to accept almost 100 more former inmates from the detention centre.

The Obama Administration promised to close the Guantánamo facility by January 22, a deadline that it will be unable to meet. The 91 Yemeni prisoners in Guantánamo make up the largest national contingent among the 198 being held.

Six prisoners were returned to Yemen last month. After the Christmas Day bomb plot in Detroit, US officials are increasingly concerned that the country is becoming a hot-bed of terrorism. …

The country’s mountainous terrain, poverty and lawless tribal society make it, in the opinion of many analysts, a close match for Afghanistan as a new terrorist haven. ..

A Yemeni, Hani Abdo Shaalan, who was released from Guantánamo in 2007, was killed in an airstrike on December 17, the Yemeni Government reported last week. The deputy head of al-Qaeda in the country is Said Ali al-Shihri, 36, who was released in 2007. Ibrahim Suleiman al-Rubaish, who was released in 2006, is a prominent ideologue featured on Yemeni al-Qaeda websites. …

The US Government issued figures in May showing that 74 of the 530 detainees in Guantánamo were suspected or known to have returned to terrorist activity since their release. They included the commander of the Taleban in Helmand province, Mullah Zakir, whom the British Chief of the Defence Staff, Sir Jock Stirrup, called “a key and seemingly effective tactical leader”. Among others who returned to terrorism was Abdullah Saleh al-Ajmi, a Kuwaiti who killed six Iraqis in Mosul in 2008.

The number believed to have “returned to the fight” in the May 2009 estimate was double that of a US estimate from June 2008. US officials acknowledged that more detainees were known to have reoffended since, but the number has been classified.

“There is a historic trend and it continues. I will only say that we have said there is a trend, we are aware of it, there is no denying the trend and we are doing our best to deal with this reality,” Mr Morrell said.

Officials said that a higher proportion of those still being held were likely to return to terrorism because they were considered more of a security threat than those selected in the early stages of the release programme.

03 May 2008

Released Guantanamo Detainee Identified as Suicide Bomber in Mosul

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Another satisfied customer of Shearman & Sterling LLP

International Herald-Tribune:

Al-Arabiya television reports that a former Guantanamo detainee carried out a recent suicide bombing in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul.

A cousin says Abdullah Saleh al-Ajmi, a Kuwaiti released from Guantanamo in 2005, was reported missing two weeks ago and his family learned of his death Thursday through a friend in Iraq.

The cousin, Salem al-Ajmi, told Al-Arabiya on Thursday that the former detainee was behind the latest attack in Mosul, although he did not provide more details.

Three suicide car bombers targeted Iraqi security forces in Mosul on April 26, killing at least seven people.

Mosul is believed to be the last urban stronghold of al-Qaida in Iraq.

His Wikipedia entry lists the US Military’s Administrative Review Board’s Summary of Evidence

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Abdallah Salih Ali Al Ajmi’s Combatant Status Review Tribunal, on (redacted) . The memo listed the following allegations against him:

The allegations against Al Ajmi were:

a. The detainee is a Taliban fighter:

The detainee went AWOL from the Kuwaiti military in order to travel to Afghanistan to participate in the Jihad.

The detainee was issued an AK-47, ammunition and hand grenades by the Taliban.

b. The detainee participated in military operations against the coalition.

The detainee admitted he was in Afghanistan fighting with the Taliban in the Bagram area.

The detainee was placed in a defensive position by the Taliban in order to block the Northern Alliance.

The detainee admitted spending eight months on the front line at the Aiubi Center, AF.[sic]

The detainee admitted engaging in two or three fire fights with the Northern Alliance.

The detainee retreated to the Tora Bora region of AF and was later captured as he attempted to escape to Pakistan.

On September 2, 2003 (just under two years after 9/11), four of Shearman & Sterling‘s finest Thomas Wilner, Neil H. Koslowe, Kristine A. Huskey, and Heather Lamberg Kafele filed a Petition for writ of Certiorari on behalf of Al Ajmi and eleven others.

Mr. Wilner wrote:

All these prisoners have asked for is a fair hearing, one in which they have the chance to learn the charges against them and to rebut the accusations before a neutral decision maker.”


Subsequently, the prisoner denied everything:

Al Ajmi denied participating in Jihad.

Al Ajmi stated he went to Pakistan to learn and memorize the Koran — he never traveled to Afghanistan.

Al Ajmi denied any contact with the Taliban. He acknowledged that he had previously confessed to the allegations he was being asked to comment on — but those were false confessions:

“These statements were all said under pressure and threats. I couldn’t take it. I couldn’t bare [sic] the threats and suffering so I started saying things. When every detainee is captured they tell him that he is either Taliban or Al-Qaida and that is it. I couldn’t bare [sic] the suffering and threatening and the pressure so I had to say I was from Taliban [sic] .”

Al Ajmi denied participating in military operations against the coalition.

Al Ajmi denied being placed in a defensive position by the Taliban:

“I am not an enemy combatant. I said this only because I was under pressure and threats and suffering.”

In response to the allegation that he admitted spending eight months in the front line at the Aiubi Center in Afghanistan, Al Ajmi responded:

“I never entered Afghanistan. I never fought with anyone. My intentions were to stay four months only but under the circumstances I had to stay for eight months. I never fought. My intentions were never to go to Afghanistan my intentions were to go to Pakistan.”


Appearing again before an Administrative Review Board, he responded to board member questions:

Al Ajmi My role was [sic] in this Tabligh [sic] to call people to pray, to do good. To let people know that there is an end to this world so they can pray and do well.

Board Member Is it a religious organization?

Al Ajmi Yes it is.

Board Member Al Ajmi I believe that your dedication to your religion is genuine, what direction or path will that dedication take should you be released?

Al Ajmi For peace.


Al Ajmi was repatriated to Kuwait November 3, 2005, where he was freed on bail, while he awaited trial. His trial began in March 2006, and he and five others were acquitted on July 22, 2006.

On April 26, in Mosul, seven members of the Iraqi security forces were killed by suicide car bombing, thus proving the excellence of the legal services provided by leading American law firms like Shearman & Sterling.


Hat tip to Major DRH.

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