13:04 GMT +318 August 2019
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    The guard tower of Camp Six detention facility of the Joint Detention Group at the US Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (File)

    US Clears Bin Laden’s Suspected Bodyguard for Release From Guantanamo Bay

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    According to newly unclassified documents from the US Department of Defense, Yemeni national Hail Aziz Ahmed al-Maythali, who probably served as a bodyguard to former al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden, is cleared for release from the Guantanamo Bay prison.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) Yemeni national Hail Aziz Ahmed al-Maythali, who probably served as a bodyguard to former al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden, is cleared for release from the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, newly unclassified documents from the US Department of Defense said.

    "The Periodic Review Board, by consensus, determined that continued law of war detention of the detainee [al-Maythali] is no longer necessary to protect against a continuing significant threat to the security of the United States," the summery of final determination stated.

    The documents indicated al-Maythali trained with al-Qaeda in Afghanistan in 2000 and 2001, may have served as a guard at Osama bin Laden's compound in Kandahar, and “may have been a bodyguard to Bin Laden.”

    The review board noted al-Maythali, 39, admitted to fighting with the Taliban, but expressed regret for his actions.

    He was arrested along with five other Yemen nationals during a raid in Karachi, Pakistan on September 11, 2002.

    If returned to Yemen, the documents said he would likely be well-placed to reengage in terrorism. Therefore the board has recommended releasing al-Maythali to an Arabic-speaking Gulf Cooperation Council country.

    This is the 34th detainee cleared for release by the Gitmo parole board.

    The United States has been widely criticized for the operation of the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. US President Barack Obama has repeatedly pledged to close the notorious prison amid mounting concern of human rights abuses, such as force-feeding, waterboarding and torture, but the detention center in Cuba remains open.

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    bodyguard, Guantanamo Bay, Osama bin Laden, United States
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