Updated: Wednesday, 08 Oct 2008, 12:54 AM EDT
Published : Monday, 30 Jun 2008, 5:58 PM EDT
The following information was released by the United States Fleet Forces Command:
Charges were sworn against âAbd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, alleging that he participated in the planning and preparation for the attack on USS Cole in the Port of Aden, Yemen, on October 12, 2000. The charges allege that two men dressed as civilians piloted what appeared to be a small, garbage barge next to the ship. The two men made friendly gestures to several crewmembers aboard the ship before detonating explosives concealed within the boat, according to the charges. The attack killed 17 Sailors, wounded 47 others, and severely damaged the ship.
The Department of Defense is developing plans to provide access to commission proceedings for victim family members at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Victim family members will be chosen equitably based on a random selection process.
Because only a limited number of victim family members may attend the pre-trial or trial events in person, arrangements are being made for closed circuit television feed to a selected U.S. site to allow victim families to view trial proceedings.
"We are committed to helping the USS Cole families during this difficult time," said Rear Adm. Mark H. Buzby, Deputy Chief of Staff for Global Force Management and Joint Force Operations at U.S. Fleet Forces Command. "It has been nearly eight years since this attack, and we recognize that the ability to observe the justice process is an important element of bringing closure to these Navy families."
Hearings in the case could begin within the next month.