Akhmed Abdul Qader was one of the most famous detainees in Guantanamo Bay during the 13 years he was imprisoned there. He was 18 when he was arrested in Pakistan and, while he had stayed at a guest house affiliated with the Taliban, there was no evidence he had ever so much as fired a gun.
And now – perhaps unsurprisingly for someone who’s finally free after 13 years in prison – he’s nowhere to be found.
Mr. Qader was cleared for release in 2009, but because his home country, Yemen, was in turmoil, he spent another six years in detention in Guantanamo while the U.S. government looked for a country willing to resettle a man who had nearly spent half his life in the company of military interrogators and other suspected Taliban and al-Qaeda members.
Earlier this year, tiny Estonia – nervous about a newly aggressive Russia to its east and anxious to build up favour with the United States in case of a confrontation – stepped up and agreed to resettle Mr. Qader. Asked why her country’s government made the decision, Merle Maigre, security adviser to Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves, is blunt. “Solidarity with the U.S.,” she shrugs.
Former Guantanamo inmate nowhere to be found in Estonia - G&M (1)