Second 'American Taliban' being held in Cuba

Click to follow

The Pentagon says it may be holding a second American-born Taliban fighter at its Guantanamo Bay camp .

The man, among 300 suspected Taliban and al-Qa'ida fighters held at the camp in Cuba, has indicated his place of birth is Baton Rouge, Louisiana, US officials said.

Lieutenant Colonel Dan Stoneking said: "The Department of Justice has recently informed us they have uncovered what appears to be a corresponding birth certificate in Baton Rouge."

"Does that mean he's a US citizen? That's a little difficult to answer right now," he said. "We need to certainly look into the matter in more detail."

American television networks, citing US officials, identified the detainee as Yasser Esam Hamdi, a 22-year-old born to Saudi parents in Louisiana. The reports said the Justice Department was trying to decide whether he should be tried in a civilian court.

Lt Col Stoneking said the Pentagon was conferring with the Department of Justice on legal issues that might arise from the prisoner's case.

He said: "We do know that this individual was among those persons originally captured following the uprising at Mazar-i-Sharif." Another American, John Walker Lindh, was also was captured in December at the same location.