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Today in legal history...

Saturday, April 14, 2012

US military announced release of detained AP journalist
Kimberly Bennett at 12:00 AM ET

On April 14, 2008, Associated Press (AP) photographer Bilal Hussein was released from custody by the US military. Hussein was released after confirmation that his conduct fell under Iraq's amnesty law. Hussein was held by the US military since his arrest in April 2006 for allegedly possessing equipment to construct roadside bombs. In November 2007, the US Department of Defense (DOD) pushed for terrorism charges to be brought against Hussein. However, such demands were met with harsh resistance from the AP, which repeatedly called for Hussein's release and accused the military of denying him his due process rights in violation of the Geneva Conventions. The US military based its allegations on information that Hussein was found with insurgents, but eventually found that he was not a threat. The Committee to Protect Journalists reported in February 2012 that other journalists worldwide have been detained and held unlawfully in similar manners.

Learn more about the laws governing journalists and freedom of the press from the JURIST news archive.

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