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Canadian Guantanamo detainee Khadr formally charged with murder

[JURIST] US military authorities Tuesday formally referred to a military commission charges [charge sheet] of murder, supporting terrorism, conspiracy and spying in "violation of the law of war" against Omar Khadr [Trial Watch profile; JURIST news archive], a Canadian detainee held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] since 2002. Khadr, the son of alleged al Qaeda financier Ahmad Khadr, allegedly threw a grenade that killed one US soldier and wounded another while fighting with the Taliban in Afghanistan. He faces a maximum penalty of life imprisonment and will be arraigned within 30 days, according to a military statement [DOD press release].

Last month, Khadr told his mother in a rare phone call to his family in Canada that he planned to boycott his trial [JURIST report]. Khadr was only 15 years old when he allegedly trained with and fought alongside al Queda fighters in Afghanistan. In 2004, Khadr was also accused [2004 charge sheet, PDF; JURIST report] of planting mines to blow up US convoys. His charges were initially renewed [JURIST report] by military prosecutors in February under the new Military Commissions Act [PDF, text] but were only sent on after approval by the Office of Military Commissions' Convening Authority. In March, the US Supreme Court rejected his request [JURIST report] to expedite his challenge to the Act. AP has more.

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