News

Nidal Hasan to renounce U.S. allegiance ahead of trial

Nidal Hasan to renounce U.S. allegiance ahead of trial

Accused Fort Hood gunman Nidal Hasan declared his wish to renounce his U.S. citizenship. Photo: Associated Press

DALLAS (Reuters) – Accused Fort Hood gunman Nidal Hasan declared his wish to renounce his U.S. citizenship and military oath in several pages of documents furnished to Fox News on Thursday, days before his court-martial is slated to begin.

Hasan, an American-born Muslim and U.S. Army major, is charged with opening fire on the Army post in Texas in November 2009, killing 13 people and wounding 32 others.

Two civilian Fort Hood police officers shot Hasan, ending the rampage and leaving the Army psychiatrist paralyzed from the chest down.

His trial was repeatedly delayed over procedural issues, such as whether he should be exempt from military grooming standards and allowed to keep his beard, which Hasan said he wears for religious reasons.

He is acting as his own attorney in his court-martial, scheduled to begin at the base on August 6. If convicted he could face execution or life in prison without parole.

Fox News said the documents, which it posted online, were furnished to the cable network at Hasan’s request by his attorney for civil matters, John Galligan.

In an email reply to Reuters, Galligan verified that the documents delivered to the cable network were from Hasan, but he declined to answer any further questions. (Typed statement: http://r.reuters.com/neg22v)

One of the posted declarations, dated October 18, 2012, and written by hand, states that he is “compelled to renounce any oaths of allegiances that require me to support/defend any man made constitution (like the Constitution of the United States) over the commandments mandated in Islam.” (Handwritten statement: http://r.reuters.com/meg22v)

It goes on to say: “I therefore formally renounce my oath of office as well as any other implicit or explicit oaths I have made in the past … This includes my oath of U.S. citizenship.”

Because Hasan, 42, is a native U.S. citizen, born in Arlington, Virginia, he would never have taken an oath of citizenship. And according to U.S. law, the type of written declaration posted online would have no legal force.

Federal law requires an individual wishing to renounce American citizenship to appear in person before a U.S. consular or diplomatic officer in a foreign country and sign an oath of renunciation, according to a U.S. State Department website.

The declarations on Thursday come five days after Hasan issued a separate public pronouncement through Fox News, a six-page statement in which he apologized for having participated in what he called “illegal and immoral aggression” against Muslims by serving in the U.S. military.

Hasan said at a pre-trial hearing that he opened fire at Fort Hood to protect Muslims and the Taliban in Afghanistan from U.S. assaults. The base is a major center for soldiers deployed to Afghanistan.

Recent Headlines

2 hours ago in Entertainment

‘Bad Boys 3’ is happening

willsmithmartin

Will Smith has promised fans "Bad Boys 3" will happen after meeting up with co-star Martin Lawrence for the first time in two years.

2 hours ago in Music

Eagles stars to honor Glenn Frey at Grammys

glennfrey

Frey's bandmates Don Henley, Bernie Leadon, Joe Walsh, and Tim Schmidt will reunite at the awards show to perform a poignant tribute to the late rocker.

2 hours ago in Sports

NASCAR changes to franchise model

nascar

NASCAR has announced a dramatic overhaul of its business model, shifting to a franchise-like system that is intended to provide actual value and financial stability to team owners.

3 hours ago in Sports

It’s now Professor Selig

budselig

The former baseball commissioner has a new gig.

3 hours ago in Weird

Do you want fries with that? Man charged with throwing alligator into fast food restaurant

21-overlay-5

Workers at a Florida Wendy's got the surprise of a lifetime when a customer tossed a 3-foot-long live alligator through the drive-thru window.