Embassy bomber charged with war crimes


The US has charged a Guantanamo Bay detainee with war crimes for the 1998 al-Qaeda attack on the US embassy in Tanzania, which left 11 people dead.

Charges against Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani - who was captured in 2004 - include murder and attacking civilians.

The Pentagon claims Mr Ghailani worked for al-Qaeda after the bombing as a forger, trainer and as a bodyguard for Osama Bin Laden.

The Pentagon said Mr Ghailani could receive the death penalty if convicted.

Mr Ghailani, a Tanzanian, is the 15th person to be charged at Guantanamo, where trials are expected to start later this year.

He goes by dozens of aliases, including "Foopie" and "Ahmed the Tanzanian".

The US defence department says Mr Ghailani's involvement included:

- buying explosives, detonators and transporting bomb components to Dar es Salaam

- helping buy the lorry (aka truck) used in the attack

- escorting the bomb engineer between Dar es Salaam and Mombassa, Kenya, after the bomb had been made

- scouting the US embassy with the suicide bomb driver

The defence department says that after the bombing, Mr Ghailani "continued in his service to al-Qaeda as a document forger, physical trainer at an al-Qaeda training camp, and as a bodyguard for Osama Bin Laden".


It is good to know we got another war criminal in custody. I am sure this came as a surprise to the BBC whose staff generally act like the only war criminals at Gitmo are the guards. I would like to see more war criminal charges brought against al Qaeda operatives. It would tend to make their cause look less glamorous.


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