Human Rights WatchGaza Fuel Cuts
Spacer home Spacer

Binyam Ahmed Mohamed

Nationality: Ethiopian

Binyam Ahmed Mohamed, 29, is an Ethiopian who trained as an electrical engineer in the United Kingdom, where he had been granted refugee status. London has requested his return, but the United States has thus far refused to hand him over.

Mohamed is charged with conspiracy to commit terrorism and providing material support for terrorism. Specifically, the United States alleges that after traveling to Afghanistan in early summer 2001 to attend a terrorist training camp where he learned how to use Kalashnikovs, rocket-propelled grenades and other weapons, he planned to travel to the United States to conduct terrorist attacks. The US government alleges that he later traveled to Pakistan and worked with Al Qaeda operatives, including Jose Padilla, who was subsequently convicted in US courts of providing material support for terrorism and conspiracy to "murder, kidnap and maim" people overseas. It claims that he and Padilla planned to blow up apartment buildings and gastankers, and spray cyanide in nightclubs in the United States.

Mohamed was arrested by Pakistani authorities at the airport in Karachi in April 2002. Mohamed claims that he was handed over to the United States, then rendered to Morocco, where he was beaten, repeatedly cut on his genitals and threatened with rape, electrocution and death. He says that he was eventually taken to secret prison in Afghanistan—known as the "dark prison"—before being transferred to Bagram Air Base and then flown to Guantanamo in September 2004. Along with several other alleged victims of rendition, Mohamed filed a lawsuit against the United States, but it was dismissed. His lawyers claim that his mental state has deteriorated gravely since he has been in US custody and that much of the evidence against him was taken under duress.

The Convening Authority of the military commissions must approve the charges before Mohamed is formally charged.

Human Rights Watch Commentary:

Military Commissions Documents: