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Australian terrorism suspect David Hicks has been charged with war crimes by a United States military tribunal.
The 29-year-old former ranch hand and kangaroo hunter made his first public appearance since he was captured in Afghanistan in December 2001.
He was charged with conspiracy to attack civilians and civilian targets, attempted murder and aiding the enemy by fighting alongside the Taliban regime in Afghanistan that was deposed in 2001.
David Hicks is said to have gone to Pakistan after converting to Islam in 2000.
Before that, he had fought with an Islamic-led militia in Kosovo during the Balkans war in 1999.
From correspondents in Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, Cuba
August 26, 2004
AUSTRALIAN David Hicks, accused of fighting with the Taliban, pleaded not guilty today before a US military commission to charges that could bring a sentence of life in prison.
Hicks, 29, of Adelaide, pleaded his innocence to charges including conspiracy to commit war crimes, aiding the enemy and attempted murder for allegedly firing at US or coalition forces.
Hicks' Adelaide lawyer Stephen Kenny, who was also in Cuba for the one-day hearing last week, said the latest court action went to the very heart of the military commission process instigated by the US Government.
"The issues are quite serious and quite fundamental and include a direct challenge to the commission process," he said.
"They seek an order declaring the commission process both unconstitutional and invalid."
Mr Kenny said Hicks' legal team was extremely hopeful the legal challenge would prove successful but he said he expected it to take considerable time.