DOS Cable re: Hamdi Transfer Hits the Press

State Department cable concerning the transfer of Yaser Esam Hamdi from US custody to Saudi Arabia as reported in the newspapers.

Doc_type: 
Cable
Doc_date: 
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
Doc_rel_date: 
Wednesday, December 29, 2004
Doc_text: 

...I
UNCLASSIFIED
. RELEASED IN PART

SECRET B1, 1.4(D)
TELEGRAM September 21,

·2004
To: SECSTATE WASHDC -IMMEDIATE Action: NEA From: AMEMBASSY RIYADH (RIYADH 5023 -IMMEDIATE) TAGS: CASC, PHUM, PREL, SA Captions: SENSITIVE Subject: HAMDI TRANSFER HITS THE PRESS Ref: A. RIYADH 4944 ~. STATE 201746 C. RIYADH 4905 D. STATE
199662
Classified By: POLIC Michael Gfoeller for reasons 1.4 (b) and
(d) .
1. (S) SUMMARY/COMMENT: On September 21~ Saudi newspapers disclosed details of Yaser Hamdi's release. Hamdi's father was quoted in the Saudi press September 21 !'tt-;:::)t-inc t-hat: hi~ American citizenship would be withdrawn. I I
Bl
2. (U) On September 21, the Saudi press published details of
the transfer of Yaser Hamdi to Saudi Arabia. The
Arabic-language Al-Watanreported a telephone interview with
Hamdi's father, Essam Hamdi, who expressed happiness at the
impending release of his son. The article reported that
Yaser Hamdi was detained in Afghanistan in 2001 and
transferred to GUantanamo Bay, Cuba. Essam thanked those
involved in securing his son's release, including the
Ministries of Interior and Foreign Affairs, and the Saudi

UNITE~H~DRrAfi'!~l'~AlFcH;\TE REVIEW AUTH6RITY: SHARONt~AHMAD DATE/CASE ID: 16 DEC 2004 200303827
008-001408
UNCLASSIFIED

UNCLASSIFIED

3.
(SBU) Frank Denham, a lawyer for Hamdi, said an agreement had been reached with the USG to release Hamdi without charge. The newspaper also reported that U.S. Department ~f Defense officials had announced that Hamdi was an'American citizen of Saudi origin, and that he would soon be transferred to Saudi authorities. American officials added that Hamdi's U.S. citizenship would be '''withdrawn'' and that he will be banned from traveling to the U.S., Afghanistan,' Iraq, Israel, Pakistan, Syria, the Gaza Strip, or the West Bank. He must inform Saudi authorities of any travel plans out of the Kingdom.

4.
(SBU) Another Arabic-language newspaper, al-Eqtisadiya, published a similar article on September 21. citing a White House official as reported on the CNN web site. That qrticle reports that, pursuant to an agreement with the USG, Hamdi will be allowed to return to the Kingdom as a free man. It also noted the travel ban and that American nationality would be flwithdrawn" from him. OBERWETTER

Additional Addressees: None,
cc: AMCONSUL JEDDAH
Distribution:
TED4524 ACTION NEA-OO
INFO' 00 00 00 00 00 LOG-OO vC-OO M-OO PM-OO SSO-OO NP-OO H-OO AC-OO PRS-OO 88-00 AID-OO TEDE-OO NSAE-OO ACE-OO TRSE-OO CrAE-OO INR-OO NSCE-OO P-OO T-OO DODE-OO L-OO OCS-OO 8CT-OO BBG-OO DOEE-OO CAC-OO OMB-OO FMPC-OO IIP-OO DS-VCE-PA-SP-PMB­

00S-001409
UNCLASSIFIED
UNCLASSIFIED

.~

II..
DSCC-OO DRL-OO G-OO NFAT-OO SAS-OO SWCI-OO /OOOW ------------------64538F 211357Z /38
o 211241Z SEP 04
FM AMEMBASSY RIYADH
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 0840
INFO AMCONSUL JEDDAH

SEC RET RIYADH 005023
SENSITIVE
FOR NEA/ARP I S/WCI AND CA

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/21/2029
TAGS: PREL, CASC, PRUM, SA
SUBJECT: HAMDI TRANSFER HITS THE PRESS

:( REF: A. RIYADH 4944 , B. STATE 201746
C. RIYADH 4905
D. STATE 199662
r--OOS-001410
UNCLASSIFIED

Doc_nid: 
6289
Doc_type_num: 
68