IFJ call to release hunger strike journo - Press Gazette

IFJ call to release hunger strike journo

The International Federation of Journalists has called on the US government to release Al Jazeera cameraman Sami Al-Haj, who this week entered the 100th day of hunger strike after almost five years of detention at Guantanamo Bay.

According to the IFJ, Al-Haj was first arrested crossing into Afghanistan with a legitimate visa on 15 December 2001.

He was held by the US military at the Bagram base before being transferred to Guantanamo on 13 June 2002.

The IFJ says that since then he has been interrogated on more than 150 occasions, tortured, and accused of terrorism offences.

Al-Haj is the only confirmed journalist now imprisoned at Guantanamo, according to the IFJ.

The US has alleged that he worked as a financial courier for Chechen rebels.

Al-Haj's lawyer, Clive Stafford Smith, said there is no credible evidence against his client and that the focus of US questioning has not been alleged terrorist activities but obtaining intelligence on Al Jazeera and its staff.