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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

US military judge sets opening date for Khadr trial
Bhargav Katikaneni at 11:52 AM ET

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[JURIST] A US military judge announced tuesday that the trial of Guantanamo Bay detainee Omar Khadr [DOD Materials; JURIST news archive] will begin on August 10 [scheduling order, PDF]. Army Col. Patrick Parrish also ordered pre-trial hearings [JURIST report] on the admissibility of Khadr's alleged confession to resume July 12. Khadr's pre-trial hearings were suspended last week so that Pentagon officials could submit him to a mental health evaluation. Khadr was arrested in Afghanistan in 2002 at the age of 15 after he allegedly threw a grenade that killed on soldier and injured another.

Last week, a UN official called on the US and Canada to respect international conventions [JURIST report] and release Khadr into Canadian custody. In February, Khadr's lawyers filed an emergency motion in the Federal Court of Canada [official website] challenging the decision of the Canadian government not to seek his repatriation [JURIST report]. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that Canada was not obligated [JURIST report] to seek his repatriation despite having violated his rights under section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms [text].

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