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April 19, 2014

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US: detained Yemeni may rejoin al Qaida if freed

Updated Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014 | 7:36 a.m.

ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) — His U.S. jailers say a Yemeni detained for 12 years at Guantanamo Bay would have ample opportunity to rejoin al Qaida if he is released.

But his lawyer says Abdel Malik al-Rahabi only wants to rejoin his family and start an agricultural business.

Both sides presented arguments Tuesday to a Periodic Review Board that will determine whether al-Rahabi poses any threat to the United States.

This was the first such hearing to be publicly observed. Reporters and human-rights advocates watched a video feed at a military office in Arlington, Va.

Al-Rahabi is among dozens of detainees considered too dangerous for release, even though the government may not have enough evidence to prosecute them.

President Barack Obama ordered the military in 2010 to periodically review the threat posed by these men.