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article imageBilal Hussein Is Free After Two Years Of Detention

By KJ Mullins     Apr 16, 2008 in World
A Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist has been freed after two years of being detained by the United States military. Bilal Hussein was handed over to AP colleagues today at a checkpoint in Baghdad.
"I want to thank all the people working in AP ... I have spent two years in prison even though I was innocent. I thank everybody," Hussein said after being freed.
Hussein is now resting with his family after the long ordeal.
He is a journalistic face of how the United States military has been detaining individuals deemed to have ties to insurgents without having to file charges.
Last week Hussein's case was finally over when an Iraqi panel dismissed all charges. Since that time it's been a waiting game for the photographer's release from Camp Cropper in Baghdad
Showered with candy and flowers Hussein embraced his family in an emotional reunion. A feast is being prepared in his return with two sheep being roasted.
The Committee to Protect Journalists in New York is thrilled by his release.
He now joins a growing list of journalists detained in conflict zones by the U.S. military for prolonged periods and eventually released without any charges or crimes ever substantiated against them," said Simon. "This deplorable practice should be of concern to all journalists. It basically allows the U.S. military to remove journalists from the field, lock them up and never be compelled to say why."
It really is a time to celebrate when a journalist is released from prison. This man had been proven time and time again to be innocent. Finally justice has prevailed. Covering this story for the past few months I have received letters from others trying to free this man. I am happy to see the light beaming brightly as Hussein steps back into the sun.
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