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Trial Delay For Bali Bombing Suspect Drags On


(MENAFN- Asia Times) It is coming up on the 21st anniversary of the devastating 2002 Bali bombing as the US Military Commissions plan pretrial hearings for Encep Nurjaman, the Indonesian militant accused of masterminding a crime that claimed the lives of 202 people, but who can't be prosecuted in his own country.

Incarcerated at Cuba's grim Guantanamo Bay detention facility since 2006, Nurjaman and fellow Malaysian militants Nazir bin Lep and Farik bin Amin were last in a Guantanamo courtroom in January, sharing evidence with their American defense lawyers via video link.

But in one of the endless delays over the past two decades, this time at the request of Bin Kep's lawyer, the scheduled July 24-August 8 hearing was postponed until October without any clear explanation, though prosecutors say it isn't unusual in a national-security case.

Ron Flesvig, spokesman for the US Military Commissions, said the delay was“consistent with the military judge's responsibility to ensure proceedings are conducted in a fair and orderly manner without unnecessary delay or waste of time and resources.”

The three men are believed to be among at least 30 who remain at Guantanamo, down from 558 names whose Combatant Status Review had been reviewed over time. But how they were whittled down over the intervening period remains unclear.

It is now believed Nurjaman and the other two militants will finally go on trial in 2025, accused of the October 10, 2002, bombing of two Bali nightclubs and a suicide blast at Jakarta's JW Marriott Hotel that claimed 11 other innocent victims the following year.

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