The U.S. should not be a safe haven for accused war criminals like Somalia’s Col. Tukeh

In December 1987, he and other men and boys from his village were rounded up and taken to the base of the 5th Mechanized Brigade of the Somali National Army, in Gabiley, a town in northwestern Somalia, where Col. Yusuf Abdi Ali ( aka”Tukeh”) was the commander.

On Monday, May 13, 2019, after more than 31 years, a trial began in a U.S. courthouse in Virginia that will allow Mr. Warfaa, 48, to face Col. Tukeh over Tukeh’s alleged role in the torture and attempted extrajudicial killing of Mr. Warfaa.

The case was filed on Mr. Warfaa’s behalf under the U.S. Torture Victim Protection Act of 1991 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia by the San Francisco-based Center for Justice and Accountability. CJA is a nonprofit organization committed to bringing to justice human rights violators and war criminals living in the United Sates.

According to a CJA press release, “The case alleges that Col. Tukeh’s soldiers tortured and interrogated Mr. Warfaa while he was imprisoned at a military base in Northern Somalia, and that Col. Tukeh himself shot Mr. Warfaa five times at point blank range, leaving him for dead. Miraculously, he survived. Mr. Warfaa alleges that he was persecuted because he is a member of the Isaaq clan.”

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This piece was orginally published in the Cleveland.com

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