Haji Ghalib is a citizen of Afghanistan who was held in extrajudicial detention in the United States Guantanamo Bay detention camps, in Cuba.[1] His Guantanamo Internment Serial Number was 987. Guantanamo counter-terrorism analysts estimate he was born in 1963, in Nangarhar, Afghanistan. Ghalib was repatriated on February 28, 2007 after four years without ever being charged.[2]

Combatant Status Review TribunalEdit

File:Trailer where CSR Tribunals were held.jpg

Initially the Bush administration asserted that they could withhold all the protections of the Geneva Conventions to captives from the war on terror. This policy was challenged before the Judicial branch. Critics argued that the USA could not evade its obligation to conduct competent tribunals to determine whether captives are, or are not, entitled to the protections of prisoner of war status.

Subsequently the Department of Defense instituted the Combatant Status Review Tribunals. The Tribunals, however, were not authorized to determine whether the captives were lawful combatants -- rather they were merely empowered to make a recommendation as to whether the captive had previously been correctly determined to match the Bush administration's definition of an enemy combatant.

Summary of Evidence memoEdit

File:Nangarhar districts.png

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Ghalib's Combatant Status Review Tribunal, on 1 October 2004.[6] The memo listed the following allegations against him:

a. The detainee is a member of the Taliban.
  1. Detainee was the commander of security[7] Shinwar, Afghanistan and was in this post until his capture.
  2. The Detainee was captured with a letter from the Ghunikiel Administrator, Haji Jabar, which implicated the detainee as a bomb maker.
  3. United States Special Forces discovered a bomb making facility in a compound located next to the detainee's place of business. They discovered approximately 18 assorted types of explosive devices.


Ghalib chose to participate in his Combatant Status Review Tribunal.[8] The Department of Defense released a ten page summarized transcript of the Tribunal on March 3, 2006.

Administrative Review Board hearingEdit

Detainees who were determined to have been properly classified as "enemy combatants" were scheduled to have their dossier reviewed at annual Administrative Review Board hearings. The Administrative Review Boards weren't authorized to review whether a detainee qualified for POW status, and they weren't authorized to review whether a detainee should have been classified as an "enemy combatant".

They were authorized to consider whether a detainee should continue to be detained by the United States, because they continued to pose a threat—or whether they could safely be repatriated to the custody of their home country, or whether they could be set free.

Summary of Evidence memoEdit

A Summary of Evidence memo was prepared for Ghalib's Administrative Review Board hearing on July 25, 2005.[9]

The following primary factors favor continued detention

a. Commitment
  1. Three potentially incriminating letters are associated with the detainee.
  2. Letter one alleges detainee had prior knowledge of and failed to stop production of Improvised Explosive Devices (IED's).
  3. Letter one appears to have been written after the detainee's arrest because it refers to him as the "previous security commander." The detainee was the security commander until his arrest.
  4. Letter two was written on Mullah Mohammed Omar's official letterhead regarding a meeting and agreement that the detainee and Malawi Ahmed Jan reached. The author is unknown.
  5. Letter three was addressed to the Nangarhar intelligence department and "all Taliban members." It identifies the detainee and urges all recipients to offer as much help to him as possible.
b. Connections and Associations
Detainee identified Jan as the Taliban Minister of Mines and Industry. The detainee and others ambushed Jan and a group of Taliban, took Jan prisoner and beat him. Jan was released to the Pakistan government because it intervened.
c. Other Relevant Data
  1. The detainee fought in the Russian jihad as a commander for nearly fifteen years. After the jihad, the detainee served as the Deputy of Refugee Affairs in Jalalabad.
  2. During the Taliban era, the detainee fought the Taliban. The Taliban captured the detainee and held him for nearly two months.
  3. The detainee was confined for a short time in his hometown until several Taliban captured the detainee and held him until he lost consciousness.
  4. The Taliban released the detainee after village elders spoke on his behalf. He was exiled from Afghanistan until he lost consciousness.
  5. The detainee returned to Afghanistan and fought alongside the Americans during the assault on Tora Bora.
  6. After the fighting ended, the detainee was appointed as commander of security for Shinwar District. The detainee remained as the security commander until his capture.
  7. Two months prior to his arrest, the detainee and the District commissioner discovered weapons stored in two locations, within and next door to the judge's office.
  8. Detainee claims he notified the governor, the military head of office and the intelligence office in Jalalabad but never received a response from anyone.
  9. Mid-February 2003, United States Security Forces (USSF) came to collect the weapons cache from the district governor. The detainee says he was in Kabul and did not inform the USSF of the existence of the IED's.
  10. The detainee was captured on 26 February 2003 while at his security compound.
  11. When informed that explosives were discovered behind the courthouse the detainee admitted he was aware of the ammunition but knew nothing of explosives. The detainee was arrested and taken to jail in Jalalabad.

The following primary factors favor release or transfer

a. The detainee characterizes two letters as forgeries. He said the letter on Mullah Omar's letterhead was written by his enemies in an attempt to destroy his reputation.
b. The detainee claims that Haji Jaba, author of letter one is a liar and does not know why he would prepare a sworn statement against him.
c. The detainee said that many HIG members in his province are causing trouble. He does not support the operations of the HIG as they preach resistance to disarmament.
d. The detainee denies having any explosive devices or planning any attacks against the Americans.
e. Even while confined, the detainee still considers himself a part of the government and is concerned with how stability could be achieved.
f. The detainee characterizes the Americans as his friends and primary reason that he was able to return to Afghanistan.


Ghalib chose to participate in his Administrative Review Board hearing.[10] In April 2006 the Department of Defense released a 13 page summarized transcript of the hearing.

Board recommendationsEdit

In early September 2007 the Department of Defense released two heavily redacted memos, from his Board, to Gordon England, the Designated Civilian Official.[11][12] The Board's recommendation was unanimous The Board's recommendation was redacted. England authorized his transfer on 22 October 2005.


On November 25, 2009, the Department of Defense published a list of the dates captives were transferred from Guantanamo.[13] According to that list Ghalib Hassan was transferred on February 8, 2007. Ghalib is considered a leader in the anti-Taliban resistance under Abdul Haq. [8]Ghalib's tribe, the Shinwari, have signed an Anti-Taliban pact.

See also Edit


  1. list of prisoners (.pdf), US Department of Defense, May 15, 2006
  2. Haji Ghalib – The Guantánamo Docket [1] The New York Times
  3. Guantánamo Prisoners Getting Their Day, but Hardly in Court, New York Times, November 11, 2004 - mirror
  4. Inside the Guantánamo Bay hearings: Barbarian "Justice" dispensed by KGB-style "military tribunals", Financial Times, December 11, 2004
  5. "Annual Administrative Review Boards for Enemy Combatants Held at Guantanamo Attributable to Senior Defense Officials". United States Department of Defense. March 6, 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-22. 
  6. OARDEC (1 October 2004). "Summary of Evidence for Combatant Status Review Tribunal -- Ghalib, Haji". United States Department of Defense. pp. page 8. Retrieved 2008-01-19. 
  7. The word "security" was missing from the allegation as recorded in the transcript of his Combatant Status Review Tribunal.
  8. 8.0 8.1 OARDEC (date redacted). "Summarized Unsworn Detainee Statement". United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 1–10. Retrieved 2008-02-01. 
  9. OARDEC (July 25, 2005). "Unclassified Summary of Evidence for Administrative Review Board in the case of Ghalib, Haji". United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 18–20. Retrieved 2007-10-07. 
  10. OARDEC (August 10, 2005). "Summary of Administrative Review Board Proceedings of ISN 987". United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 165–177. Retrieved 2008-02-01. 
  11. OARDEC (22 October 2005). "Administrative Review Board assessment and recommendation ICO ISN 987". United States Department of Defense. pp. page 82. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
  12. OARDEC (16 August 2005). "Classified Record of Proceedings and basis of Administrative Review Board recommendation for ISN 987". United States Department of Defense. pp. pages 83–88. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
  13. Consolidated chronological listing of GTMO detainees released, transferred or deceased [2] OARDEC 2008-10-09

External links Edit