'9/11 Five' hearings stumble on female guard spat

Flags fly at half staff for the San Bernardino mass-shooting victims on December 6, 2015 near the military courtroom in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where five men accused of plotting the September 11, 2001 attacks are in court for hearings this weekThe five men accused of plotting 9/11 appeared in a Guantanamo Bay military court Tuesday, but the murder of 3,000 people faded into the background as testimony focused on whether female guards should have been allowed to touch the detainees. Proceedings against Pakistan-born Khalid Sheikh Mohammed — who has publicly admitted to being the principal planner of the September 11, 2001 attacks — and his four co-defendants have gotten bogged down by complaints stemming from the use of women guards to escort them to and from the courthouse. As strict Muslims, the inmates say it was inappropriate for women to handle them, and Mohammed has said it makes him flash back to the torture and sexual humiliation meted out by the Cental Intelligence Agency after he was captured in Pakistan in 2003 and sent to secret prisons.

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