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Judge Hearing Testimony About Female Guantanamo Guards

In this Dec. 6, 2006, file photo, a shackled detainee is transported by guards away from his annual Administrative Review Board hearing with U.S. officials, at Camp Delta detention center, Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base, Cuba. Brennan Llinsley/AP
In this Dec. 6, 2006, file photo, a shackled detainee is transported by guards away from his annual Administrative Review Board hearing with U.S. officials, at Camp Delta detention center, Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base, Cuba. Brennan Llinsley/AP

FORT MEADE, Md. -- A military judge is taking testimony about the restricted use of female guards at Guantanamo Bay amid discrimination complaints and high-level outrage.

Army Col. James Pohl scheduled testimony Friday from several current or former camp commanders as defense witnesses. Defense lawyers want Pohl to make permanent his interim order barring female guards from transporting their clients. The detainees say their Muslim faith prohibits physical contact with females other than wives or relatives.

Since Pohl made the ruling in January, at least two female guards have filed equal opportunity complaints. On Tuesday, Defense Secretary Ash Carter called the order "outrageous" during a Senate committee hearing.

The detainees are the five men accused of planning or aiding the Sept. 11 terrorist attack. Their pretrial hearing is at the naval base in Cuba.

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