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the mobbs declaration on hamdi

Declaration of Michael H. Mobbs
Special Advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy

Filed in Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, No. 2:02CV439 (E.D. Va.)

Declaration of Michael H. Mobbs
Special Advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy

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Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1746, I, Michael H. Mobbs, Special Advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, hereby declare that, to the best of my knowledge, information and belief, and under the penalty of perjury, the following is true and correct:

1. I am a Special Advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy. In this position, I have been substantially involved with matters related to the detention of enemy combatants in the current war against the al Qaeda terrorists and those who support and harbor them (including the Taliban). I have been involved with detainee operations since mid-February 2002 and currently head the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy's Detainee Policy Group.

2. I am familiar with Department of Defense, U.S. Central Command and U.S. land forces commander policies and procedures applicable to the detention, control and transfer of al Qaeda or Taliban personnel in Afghanistan during the relevant period. Based upon my review of relevant records and reports, I am also familiar with the facts and circumstances related to the capture of Yaser Esam Hamdi and his detention by U.S. military forces.

3. Yaser Esam Hamdi traveled to Afghanistan in approximately July or August of 2001. He affiliated with a Taliban military unit and received weapons training. Hamdi remained with his Taliban unit following the attacks of September 11 and after the United States began military operations against the al Qaeda and Taliban on October 7, 2001.

4. In late 2001, Northern Alliance forces were engaged in battle with the Taliban. During this time, Hamdi's Taliban unit surrendered to Northern Alliance forces and he was transported with his unit from Konduz, Afghanistan to the prison in Mazar-e-Sharif, Afghanistan which was under the control of the Northern Alliance forces. Hamdi was directed to surrender his Kalishnikov assault rifle to Northern Alliance forces en route to Mazar-e-Sharif and did so. After a prison uprising, the Northern Alliance transferred Hamdi to a prison at Sheberghan, Afghanistan, which was also under the control of Northern Alliance forces.

5. While in the Northern Alliance prison at Sheberghan, Hamdi was interviewed by a U.S. interrogation team. He identified himself as a Saudi citizen who had been born in the United States and who entered Afghanistan the previous summer to train with and, if necessary, fight for the Taliban. Hamdi spoke English.

6. Al Qaeda and Taliban were and are hostile forces engaged in armed conflict with the armed forces of the United States and its Coalition partners. Accordingly, individuals associated with al Qaeda or Taliban were and continue to be enemy combatants. Based upon his interviews and in light of his association with the Taliban, Hamdi was considered by military forces to be an enemy combatant.

7. At the Sheberghan prison, Hamdi was determined by the U.S. military screening team to meet the criteria for enemy combatants over whom the United States was taking control. Based on an order of the U.S. land forces commander, a group of detainees, including Hamdi, was transferred from the Northern Alliance-controlled Sheberghan prison to the U.S. short-term detention facility in Kandahar. Hamdi was in-processed and screened by U.S. forces at the Kandahar facility.

8. In January 2002, a Detainee Review and Screening Team established by Commander, U.S. Central Command reviewed Hamdi's record and determined he met the criteria established by the Secretary of Defense for individuals over whom U.S. forces should take control and transfer to Guantanamo Bay.

9. A subsequent interview of Hamdi has confirmed the fact that he surrendered and gave his firearm to Northern Alliance forces which supports his classification as an enemy combatant.

[Signed]
MICHAEL H. MOBBS
Special Advisor to the
Under Secretary of Defense for Policy

Dated: 24 July 2002

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posted october 16, 2003

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