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Arraignment preps for 9/11 masterminds

Saturday, May 05, 2012 - 02:31

May 5 - A military tribunal prepares to arraign five defendents charged with masterminding the 9/11attacks in the US. Julie Noce reports.

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EDIT CONTAINS 4:3 MATERIAL A handful of family members of the some 3,000 victims of the 9/11 attacks arrived in Guantanamo Bay Friday. They were chosen by lottery to witness the arraignment of the five men who claim responsibility for the attacks. Now ten years later, it's clear victims' families have dealt with the pain in various way. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CLIFF RUSSELL, BROTHER OF 9/11 VICTIM, SAYING: "It's the most disgusting, hateful, awful thing I ever could think of. To think that it was perpetrated, it's crazy." (SOUNDBITE) TARA HENWOOD-BUTZBAUGH, SAYING: "I don't think so. The human side of me still, I don't ... I'm glad I don't know anything about that way of thought or that way of life. And I will not be terrorized in any way or change my life in any way because of it. It's been changed and altered enough." Later Saturday, a military tribunal will hear the pleas from the five men... Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is one of them, often seen in this photo looking disheveled, in a white tee-shirt. Mohammed and four other detainees are being charged on seven counts including hijacking, terrorism and murder in violation of the law of war. Controversy surrounding the legitimacy of the tribunals set up under President Bush- namely whether statements obtained through the use of torture could be admitted as evidence-- had delayed or postponed the trials for several years. But in 2009 under President Obama the tribunals were overhauled... and now Chief prosecutor Brigadier General Mark Martins says they are fair. (SOUNDBITE) (English) ARMY BRIGADIER GENERAL MARK MARTINS SAYING: "Some have said that any attempt to seek accountability within the military commission system must inevitably be tainted by torture. To those who have these concerns, we say: we acknowledge your skepticism, but we also say that the law prohibits the use of any statement obtained as the result of torture, or a cruel inhuman or degrading treatment. And we will implement the law These proceedings will be fair, and I submit that we military judge advocates who are carrying out assigned duties in this reform process have some standing to maintain that they will be fair." The detainees have said they consider the accusations a badge of honor... Mohammed said he's looking forward to being martyred. If the defendants plead guilty or are ultimately convicted, it would likely be years before appeals are completed and the sentences carried out. Julie Noce, Reuters

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Arraignment preps for 9/11 masterminds

Saturday, May 05, 2012 - 02:31