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|Appeal to Obama for Release of Al-Moayad and Zayed|
Article Date: January 21, 2009
Head of the committee
entrusted with defending Sheikh Muhammad al-Moayad and his assistant
Muhammad Zayed sheikh Hamoud Hashim al-Tharhi has made an appeal to the
US President Barack. H. Obama for the release of the two Yemeni
detainees in the US since 2003.
Al-Tharhi hopes Al-Moayad and his aid Zayed will be released as soon as possible particularly after terrorism convictions against the two were reversed by a US appeal court in October 2008.
Offering assistance to the Palestinian movement of Hamas is not a crime, he said.
We expect Obama to be good as he, from the first day of his work as US president, issued an order to suspend the trials of Guantanamo detainees, al-Tharhi said.
In his inaugural address, Obama promised the US will turn over a new leaf in its relations with the Muslim World.
Al-Tharhi urged the US authorities to transfer al-Moayad, 60, to a good hospital as his health condition is deteriorating.
Sheikh Muhammad Al-Moayad and his companion Muhammad Zayed were arrested in 2003 in Germany and extradited to the US.
In 2005, the two were convicted by a US court of charges related to terrorist finance and sentenced to 75 and 45 years in jail respectively.
However, a federal appeals panel in New York in October 2008 overturned their convictions in a prominent terrorism case once hailed by the Bush administration as a significant blow to Al Qaeda.
This was based on that sheikh Al-Moayad and his assistant had been deprived of a fair trial because of errors by the presiding judge,The appeals court judges found that the defendants, Sheik Mohammed Ali Hassan al-Moayad and his aide, Mohammed Mohsen Yahya Zayed, did not receive a fair trial because the trial judge, Sterling Johnson Jr., allowed the jury to hear inflammatory testimony and other evidence that prejudiced the defendantsí case.