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US claims Habib trained 9/11 hijackers -

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Broadcast: 07/10/2004

US claims Habib trained 9/11 hijackers

Reporter: John Stewart

TONY JONES: The United States military has released new documents which claim that Australian
Guantanamo Bay detainee, Mamdouh Habib, trained some of the pilots involved in the September 11

But Mr Habib's lawyer has dismissed the claims and says they'll be thrown out of court.

John Stewart reports.

JOHN STEWART: The United States military claims that Mamdouh Habib knew of plans to launch the
September 11 attacks on New York and Washington.

The documents served on Habib also claim that he trained some of the September 11 hijackers in
martial arts and that he considered piloting one of the planes himself.

Mr Habib's lawyer says the claims have no substance.

STEPHEN HOPPER, LAWYER: Mamdouh Habib didn't have any significant training in martial arts and,
indeed, those hijackers were in America before Mr Habib left Australia.

JOHN STEWART: If Mamdouh Habib did confess to having knowledge of the September 11 attacks and
training the hijackers, his lawyer says the confessions were obtained under duress.

STEPHEN HOPPER: If someone was electrocuting you and ripping you fingernails out, you would tell
them anything they wanted to hear so they would stop.

JOHN STEWART: Mamdouh Habib was captured in Pakistan shortly after September 11.

His legal team claims he was tortured while being held in Egypt before being moved to Guantanamo

Habib is one of 15 detainees, including fellow Australian David Hicks, considered by the US
government to be eligible to face trial by military commission.

But now the charges against Mr Habib have finally been released, his supporters are confident he
will return to Australia.

John Stewart, Lateline.

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