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Former Guantanamo Bay detainee weds in Australia

THE first Guantanamo Bay detainee to be convicted under the US military commission system was married over the weekend in a Christian wedding in Australia, his father said today.

David Hicks, 34, who was released from prison in 2007, was married by a Uniting Church pastor in a Sydney chapel on Saturday to university student Aloysia Brooks, said father Terry Hicks, who attended the private ceremony.

David Hicks, an Australia-born Muslim convert who was captured by the US-backed Northern Alliance in Afghanistan in late 2001, gave up his Islamic beliefs during his 5 1/2 years as a prisoner at the US naval base on Cuba, his father said.

"He did that ages ago," Terry Hicks said of his only son reverting to Christianity.

The wedding guests included Michael Mori, the Pentagon-appointed Marine Corps defense lawyer who brokered David Hicks' plea bargain on terrorism charges in March 2007, Terry Hicks said.

Hicks pleaded guilty in Guantanamo Bay to providing material support to al-Qaida as a Taliban soldier. He served nine months in a civilian prison in his hometown of Adelaide in South Australia state before he was released in December 2007.

Mori has since been promoted from major to lieutenant colonel and is now a military judge.

"It was absolutely brilliant," Hicks' father said of the wedding.

"He's well on his way now" to regaining a normal life, he added.

For a year after his release from prison, David Hicks was placed under a strict court order imposed under recent counterterrorism laws that required him to report to police three days a week, observe a curfew and banned him from using any telephone or Internet account not approved by police.

Hicks, who has two children from a previous relationship, met his wife when he moved from Adelaide to Sydney last year.

Terry Hicks said his son would not make any comment to the media.


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