Retired US Soldier Criticizes Canada’s Release of Former Gitmo Inmate

The Associated Press

Retired U.S. soldier Layne Morris is criticizing Canadian judge’s decision to allow the release of Omar Khadr — a former Guantanamo Bay detainee convicted of war crimes for killing U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Speer in 2002.

Morris lost sight in one eye during the attack.

Speaking to Deseret News, Morris described a firefight after which everyone was believed to be dead.

“We thought everybody was dead in the compound. [But] Omar was waiting in the rubble. When the rest of my team got close enough, he popped up, threw his hand grenade,” he said.

The grenade explosion killed Sgt. Speer.

Khadr was captured and “was detained at Guantanamo Bay for 10 years.” He was 15 years old when he took Speer’s life.

In 2012 Khadr was transferred to Canada to serve out an eight year sentence that was handed down in 2010. The Canadian government petitioned for Khadr’s continued incarceration but Canadian Court of Appeal Justice Myra Bielby denied their request and released the former Gitmo inmate on May 7.

Khadr said he does not believe in jihad “right now,” adding: “I want to start fresh. There are too many good things in life that I want to experience,” he said.

According to the Associated Press, the U.S. State Department supported the Canadian government’s decision to fight Khadr’s release. He is the “son of an alleged senior al-Qaida financier.”

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