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According the news reports, Associated Press photographer Bilal Hussein, seen here, has been released from custody by an Iraqi judicial committee, nearly two years the U.S. military detained Hussein on the grounds that he had been working with terrorists.
The decision by the Iraqi panel seems to be based on a new amnesty law. For now, however, Hussein, 36, is said to remain in custody at Camp Cropper, a U.S. facility near Baghdad.
As we reported last year, for much of the time during his detention, Hussein was simply hidden away from view without actually being charged with any crimes. Last September, the Associated Press publicly pleaded with the U.S. military to either charge him or set him free.
The military says it captured Hussein with two insurgents in 2006, including Hamid Hamad Motib, an alleged leader of al-Qaida in Iraq. The military said he had “close relations” with terrorists. Associated Press said its own investigation produced no evidence that Hussein had done anything to cause his detention.
“The amnesty committee took only a few days to determine what we have been saying for two years,” said AP president Tom Curley.–David Schonauer