Pakistani national Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the self-proclaimed mastermind of the 9/11 terror attacks along with four other alleged al-Qaeda terrorists will face death penalty if found guilty by a US military tribunal in Guantanamo Bay.
"If convicted, the five accused could be sentenced to death," the defence department said in a statement.
Besides, 46-year-old Mohammed, others standing on trial are Walid Muhammad Salih Mubarak Bin 'Attash, Ramzi Binalshibh, Ali Abdul Aziz Ali, and Mustafa Ahmed Adam al Hawsawi.
The charges allege that the five are "responsible for the planning and execution of the attacks of September 11, 2001 resulting in the killing of 2,976 people," the statement said yesterday.
The convening authority, the Office of Military Commissions, referred charges to a capital military commission, the department said.
It added that the convening authority referred the case to a capital military commission, meaning that, if convicted, the five accused could be sentenced to death.
The US military had initially charged Mohammed in 2008, but President Barack Obama stopped the case as part of his effort to close the US detention center at Guantanamo Bay.
Unable to close the center, Obama attempted to move the case to federal court in New York in 2009, only to run into a political firestorm.
The plan was dropped after complaints about cost and security.
The American Civil Liberties Union opposes the military tribunals.
The Pentagon has previously said Mohammed, who was captured in Pakistan in March 2003 and has been detained at Guantanamo Bay since 2006, admitted he was responsible "from A to Z" for the 9/11 attacks.