May 31, 2014 – Four of the five Guantanamo Bay detainees released by the United States on Saturday in exchange for Army Sgt. Bowe Berghdahl are subject to an assets freeze, travel ban and arms embargo by the Security Council.
The four are Fazl Mohammad Mazloom, Khirullah Khairkhwa, Nurullah Nuri and Abdul Haq Wassiq while a fifth detainee released, Mohammad Nabi Omari, is not on the sanctions list. *
They were listed for the following reasons, according to the 1988 Sanctions Committee:
Fazl Mohammad Mazloom was a close associate of Mohammed Omar (TI.O.4.01) and helped him to establish the Taliban government. Mazloom was at the Al-Farouq training camp established by Al-Qaida. He had knowledge that the Taliban provided assistance to the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan in the form of financial, weapons and logistical support in exchange for providing the Taliban with soldiers. He was a commander of approximately 3,000 Taliban front-line troops in the Takhar Province in October 2001.
Abdul-Haq Wassiq is allied with Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. Under the Taliban regime, he held successive positions as local commander in Nimroz and Kandahar provinces. He then became Deputy Director General of Intelligence, reporting to Qari Ahmadullah (TI.A.81.01). In this function, he was in charge of handling relations with Al-Qaida-related foreign fighters and their training camps in Afghanistan. He was also known for his repressive methods against Taliban opponents in the South of Afghanistan.
Khairullah Khairkhwah was listed on 25 January 2001 as Governor of the Herat Province of the Taliban regime so falling within the provisions of resolutions 1267 (1999) and 1333 (2000) of the United Nations Security Council regarding acts and activities of the Taliban authorities. Khairullah Khairkhwah also served as Spokesperson of the Taliban regime, Governor of the Kabul Province of the Taliban regime, and Minister of Internal Affairs of the Taliban regime.
Nurullah Nuri was listed on 25 January 2001 concurrently as Governor of the Balkh Province as well as Head of the Northern Zone of the Taliban regime so falling within the provisions of resolutions 1267 (1999) and 1333 (2000) of the United Nations Security Council regarding acts and activities of the Taliban authorities.
The Council passed a revised sanctions resolution in 2012 at the request of the Afghanistan Government “to support national reconciliation, including by removing names from the United Nations sanctions lists for those who reconcile, and, therefore, have ceased to engage in or support activities that threaten the peace, stability and security of Afghanistan.” While some names have been removed, the four released on Saturday remain on the list.
In terms of the travel ban, the resolution stipulates that all countries must: “Prevent the entry into or transit through their territories of these individuals, provided that nothing in this paragraph shall oblige any State to deny entry or require the departure from its territories of its own nationals and this paragraph shall not apply where entry or transit is necessary for the fulfillment of a judicial process or the Committee determines on a case-by-case basis only that entry or transit is justified, including where this directly relates to supporting efforts by the Government of Afghanistan to promote reconciliation.”
– Denis Fitzgerald
On Twitter @denisfitz
Image/ US DOD
*A Mohammed Omar Ghulam Nabi is on the Taliban sanctions list but unlike the other four whose location is listed as Guantanamo, the location entry for Nabi says he is belived to be in the Afghanistan/Pakistan border region.