Guantanamo Chaplain Freed After Three Months


The military said on Tuesday that it was releasing Capt. James J. Yee, the former Muslim chaplain at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, after confining him for nearly three months on suspicion of espionage activities, the New York Times reports.

Captain Yee will be allowed to resume his chaplain duties at Fort Benning, Ga.

At the same time, though, the United States Southern Command, based in Miami, which administers the detention center at Guantánamo Bay, said it was investigating other possible violations of military code by Captain Yee, including contentions that he had kept pornography on his government computer and had an affair. Those new charges are in addition to the ones brought in October contending that Captain Yee, also known as Youseff Yee, had disobeyed orders by taking classified information home when he was leaving Guantánamo in September.

Captain Yee’s civilian lawyer, Eugene R. Fidell of Washington, said the fact that the new charges seemed to have nothing to do with national security demonstrated that military authorities had made a major error when they held up Captain Yee as a potential spy at Guantánamo, where he ministered to the mostly Islamic prisoner population.

Mr. Fidell said the initial set of charges of failing to obey a lawful order by taking classified information home without proper covers was not a serious infraction. The new charges, he said, showed that the military was persecuting Captain Yee to cover up its mistake.


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