19:58 AEST Sun Aug 7 2005 AAP
David Hicks has marked his 30th birthday in much the same way he has spent every day of the past four years - locked up in Guantanamo Bay.
Back home, his family has been bolstered by messages of support for the terror suspect.
"To us it's a special occasion turning 30, just like turning 21, and we were probably hoping that he'd be back with us by now," his father Terry said.
Mr Hicks said complete strangers had contacted the family and stopped him in the street to pass on their best wishes .
"We've been approached by people wishing us good luck, even in the supermarket," Mr Hicks told AAP.
"A lot of people know it's his birthday.
"It's been unbelievable and the public support we've had has been excellent."
Hicks, an Australian-born convert to Islam, has been held at the US naval base in Cuba since shortly after he was captured fighting with the Taliban in Afghanistan in the immediate aftermath of September 11.
He will face a military commission - possibly in the next few weeks - to answer charges of aiding Taliban fighters in Afghanistan in late 2001.
He has pleaded not guilty to charges of attempted murder, aiding the enemy and conspiracy.
Mr Hicks said it was the fourth year in a row that his son had missed celebrating his birthday with family and friends in Adelaide.
Instead, his son would probably be locked inside his cell at Guantanamo Bay.
"They keep him locked up for 23 hours a day, so it's a bit hard for him to celebrate," Mr Hicks said.
There are fresh calls for Hicks to be brought back to Australia for trial, although the federal government says he will walk free if he does because he could not be charged under Australian laws existing at the time.
Liberal backbencher Judi Moylan has come out publicly calling for the government to ensure Hicks gets a fair trial ahead of a coalition party room meeting discussion about his fate on Tuesday.
Former High Court judge Mary Gaudron last week joined critics of the US military commission process established to try the Adelaide-born Muslim convert, saying it is clear Hicks has not committed an offence under US law.
Three US prosecutors have now quit the commission process, claiming it is unfair.
Labor says the government is ignoring the widespread criticism of the military commission process.
"Why can't we demand for this man, in the same way we do for everybody else, a fair trial?" Labor's attorney general spokeswoman Nicola Roxon told the Ten network.
She rejected Prime Minister John Howard's assurances that the allegations of bias against the military commission trial process have been adequately investigated by the Pentagon.
"I mean, really, you don't ask the school yard bully if they've actually been picking on anybody. It seems to me that this is getting a little bit silly," she said.
Greens Senator Bob Brown plans to move a motion in the upper house on Tuesday which would call on the United States to repatriate Hicks immediately.
Mr Hicks again called for his son's trial to be before a court.
"The only way David is going to get a fair trial is in a proper court system," he said.
"The commissions are not set up to find someone not guilty - they're there to find someone guilty and put them away."
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