Khalid Sheikh Mohammed likely to be executed after trial: White House

[JURIST] White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said during an interview [transcript] Sunday on CNN's State of the Union that upon being tried and convicted, alleged 9/11 conspirator Khalid Sheikh Mohammed [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] would likely be executed. Gibbs stressed that the heinous nature of the crime he is accused of merits such severe punishment. When asked about the increasingly-unclear location of the trial Gibbs said the focus was still to have the trial in New York:

We are talking with the authorities in New York. We understand their logistical concerns and their security concerns that are involved. We have been discussing that with them.

As you know, they were originally supportive of this. We want to see this man tried and brought to justice in the place in which the crime was committed. We will work with them and come to a solution that we think we bring about justice for those that lost loved ones on such a horrific day on 9/11.
Earlier this week, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg [official profile] cited [JURIST report] costs and potential disruptions to the lives of New Yorkers in urging the federal government to move the trials. Bloomberg said a military base may be a more appropriate venue [AFP report] for the trial since they are generally in secluded areas, though he said his request was not based on security concerns. Bloomberg originally backed the idea of trying some of the terrorists held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] in Manhattan due to its proximity to ground zero and the symbolic significance of convicting the suspects there. In light of criticism, the Obama administration has reportedly been considering [JURIST report] other locations but has not yet decided on a specific alternative venue [MSNBC report].

 

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