European officials ask for delay Gitmo trial for bin Laden's former driver

Hundreds of current and former European officials, including a former British attorney general and numerous parliamentarians, have asked a US judge to block a military trial against Osama bin Laden's former driver. The 375 officials from England, Northern Island and the European Parliament represent all major political parties, according the court documents filed in Washington on Friday. Many of the officials disagree on key foreign policy issues but believe many aspects of Salim Hamdan's scheduled military commission "are clearly at odds with the most basic norms of fair trial and due process," the friend-of-the-court brief said. Hamdan, born in Yemen, has been challenging the legality of the military commission system since 2004, but the case stalled as courts wrestled with the question of whether Guantanamo Bay detainees have the right to use civilian courts. A recent Supreme Court decision gave Hamdan's case new life in a Washington federal courthouse, but by the time a judge could consider the legality of the military commission system, Hamdan's trial might already be over. It is scheduled to begin July 21. He has asked a judge to block the trial, and the European officials sided with him. In particular, they worry that Hamdan's military commission trial will allow evidence obtained by coercion, possibly including some of the CIA's harshest interrogation methods. The court documents filed by the Europeans also say Hamdan should not be tried for conspiracy and material support for terrorism, since neither was recognized as a violation of the law of war before 2006.