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News | Nov. 17, 2011

Prosecution, Defense Discuss Arraignment in USS Cole Case

By By Karen Parrish, American Forces Press Service

NAVAL STATION GUANTANAMO BAY, Cuba, Nov. 9, 2011 – They waited 11 years, but today a planeload of Americans who traveled here earlier this week saw the arraignment of Abd al Rahim Hussein Muhammed al Nashiri on charges of planning and preparing a complex series of al-Qaida attacks known as the “boat operation.”

“We’ve taken a big step today … there will be justice,” said Sandra Flannigan, of Clarksburg, W. Va., the mother of a sailor killed in the October 2000 attack on the USS Cole.

Prosecutors say the terrorist operation included an attempted attack on the USS The Sullivans in January 2000; an attack on the USS Cole in October 2000, during which 17 U.S. sailors were killed and 37 more wounded; and an attack on the MV Limburg, a French civilian oil tanker, in October 2002, during which one crew member was killed and about 90,000 barrels of oil spilled into the Gulf of Aden. If convicted, Nashiri could be sentenced to death.

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