FREEDOM! (maybe)

Great news on the human rights front, from halfway around the world:

BAGHDAD An Iraqi judicial committee has dismissed terrorism-related allegations against Associated Press photographer Bilal Hussein and ordered him released nearly two years after he was detained by the U.S. military.

A decision by a four-judge panel said Hussein's case falls under a new amnesty law. It ordered Iraqi courts to "cease legal proceedings" and ruled that Hussein should be "immediately" released unless other accusations are pending.

The ruling is dated Monday but AP's lawyers were not able to thoroughly review it until Wednesday. It was unclear, however, whether Hussein would still face further obstacles to release.

Hussein, 36, remains in custody at Camp Cropper, a U.S. detention facility near Baghdad's airport.

It's still a travesty that this man, who shared a Pulitzer Prize for his war photography and then was arrested and held by our side with in a Kafka-esque nightmare with no access to a justice system and little information over what he was really accused of, surrendered two years of freedom. But I am also very happy for him, his family and his friends -- including my Daily News colleague Jim MacMillan -- who will finally be reunited.

 How many other Bilal Hussein's are in custody in Iraq?

UPDATE: Well, one Bilal Hussein who's still in custody in Iraq is Bilal Hussein, as reflected by the updated version above. I would urge the U.S. military authorities to release him as soon as possible -- before Michelle Malkin starts to bombard them with blog posts.

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