JOHN T. CURTIN, District Judge.
Petitioner Ibrahim Abdirahman Sheikh Ahmed, an alien under a final order of removal from the United States, has filed this pro se petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 seeking release from detention in the custody of the United States Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (collectively, "DHS"), pending the execution of a final immigration order of removal issued against him. Item 1. As directed by the court's order entered February 28, 2013 (Item 6), respondent has submitted an answer and return (Item 8), along with an accompanying memorandum of law (Item 9), and petitioner has submitted a response in reply (Item 10). For the reasons that follow, the petition is denied.
FACTUAL BACKGROUND AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Petitioner, a native and citizen of Somalia, entered the United States on or about February 2, 2000 and was granted lawful permanent residence status on November 8, 2002. See Item 8-1 (Payan Decl.), ¶¶ 5-6; see also Item 1, ¶ 11. Petitioner has the following criminal history:
On or about April 27, 2007, petitioner was convicted in the Davidson County Criminal Court in Nashville, Tennessee, of Evading Arrest by Motor Vehicle, in violation of § 39-16-603 of the Tennessee Code and was sentenced to a term of incarceration of two years;
On or about February 7, 2008, petitioner was convicted in the Davidson County Criminal Court in Nashville, Tennessee, of Aggravated Assault - Deadly Weapon - Intentional, in violation of § 39-13-102 of the Tennessee Code and was sentenced to a term of incarceration of six years.
See Payan Decl., ¶ 7.
On April 27, 2012, petitioner was encountered by DHS officers at the Lewiston Bridge, Lewiston, New York, after he was refused entry into Canada. See Payan Decl., ¶ 8. He was detained in DHS custody and removal proceedings were commenced by a Notice to Appear ("NTA") served April 27, 2012, which charged petitioner with being subject to removal from the United States pursuant to § 237(a)(2)(A)(ii) of the Immigration and Nationality Act ("INA"), 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(A)(ii), as an alien who has been convicted of two crimes involving moral turpitude not arising from a single scheme of misconduct, and pursuant to INA § 237 (a)(2)(A)(iii), 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(A)(iii), as an alien convicted of an aggravated felony as defined in INA § 101(a)(43)(F), 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(43)(F). Id. at ¶ 8; see also Item 8-2 (Exh. A), pp. 10-12.
On June 5, 2012, an Immigration Judge ("IJ") ordered petitioner's removal from the United States to Somalia. Payan Decl., ¶ 9; Exh. A, p. 8. Petitioner did not appeal the IJ's decision. Id.
On June 8, 2012, DHS sent a presentation packet to the DHS Headquarters Travel Document Unit ("HQTDU") requesting that a travel document be issued for petitioner's removal. Payan Decl., ¶ 10; Exh. A, p. 18. According to DHS records, DHS received a valid travel document for petitioner's removal to Somalia on July 5, 2012. The document expires on August 13, 2013. Payan Decl., ¶ 12. DHS records indicate that the United States Department of State ("DOS") advised DHS to delay removals to Somalia until the end of 2012 due to the political situation in Somalia. Id., ¶ 13.
On August 28, 2012, petitioner was notified that, upon review of his custody status and based on the totality of information available, DHS had determined that he would be a threat to the community and a flight risk if released, and detention would be continued pending removal. Payan Decl., ¶ 17; Exh. A, pp.5-6. On December 5, 2012, a panel was convened at the Buffalo Federal Detention Facility to conduct a further review of petitioner's custody status, including an in-person interview. Payan Decl., ¶ 18. Following completion of the file review and interview, petitioner was notified on December 10, 2012, that DHS had determined to continue his detention in DHS custody. Id., ¶ 19; Exh. A, p.
3. An additional review of petitioner's custody status was conducted in March 2013, and DHS determined that petitioner's detention would continue. Id., ¶ 20.
DHS records indicate that representatives of Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE") at the Buffalo Federal Detention Facility have been in regular contact with DHS HQTDU regarding petitioner's removal to Somalia. See Payan Decl., ¶ 16. The DOS website reports that in January 2013, the United States officially recognized the new Somali federal government. Id., ¶ 14 (citing Department of State website - http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1023.html). File notes indicate that travel arrangements are being made for a charter flight to Somalia "on a date certain in the near ...