'Sept. 11 mastermind to remain in jail without trial'
LAST UPDATED: 11/13/2010 10:03
US officials: Khalid Sheik Mohammed cannot be tried due to opposition of lawmakers in Congress and in New York, 'Washington Post' reports.
Mohammed, considered the mastermind behind the 2001 September 11
attacks, is likely to remain in military detention without going through
a trial in the near future, according to officials in the Obama
administration, The Washington Post reported Friday night.
administration has determined that Mohammed cannot be put on trial in a
federal court due to the opposition of lawmakers in Congress and in New
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Andrew Cuomo said Friday that the trial of the professed mastermind
shouldn't be held in New York state. There has also been little internal
support for restarting a military trial at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as
this option would alienate liberal supporters, said The Washington Post.
General Eric Holder originally proposed trying Mohammed and four
alleged accomplices in Manhattan federal court. But the administration
backtracked after New Yorkers and elected officials, including Mayor
Michael Bloomberg, objected to the costs and potential security threat.
told reporters Friday he knows Holder and has worked with him. He said
he would "advocate forcefully" to keep the trial out of New York state
Washington has indicated that President Barack Obama
will ultimately have the final say regarding the trial, and a federal
prosecution of Mohammed has not been discounted, said senior US
officials. However, a trial is unlikely to take place before the next
presidential election, the officials said.
Earlier this week, Holder said he would choose a venue for the trial soon.
Holder "says soon. Schumer says never. It's somewhere between the two," a senior administration official told The Washington Post on the condition of anonymity.
Mohammed was detained in Pakistan in March 2003 and was kept at
secret CIA jails overseas until he was brought to Guantanamo Bay in
In March 2007, the Pentagon issued a statement in
which Mohammed confessed to the beheading of American journalist Daniel
Pearl, and to having a central role in 30 other attacks and plots in
the US and worldwide that killed thousands of victims.
decapitated with my blessed right hand the head of the American Jew,
Daniel Pearl, in the city of Karachi, Pakistan," Mohammed told the