Federal Court Orders Release Of Uighurs Indefinitely Detained At Guantánamo

October 7, 2008

Decision Represents Major Blow To Bush Administration's Failed Detention Policies, Says ACLU

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: (212) 549-2666; media@aclu.org

NEW YORK – A federal judge today ordered the release of a small group of Chinese Muslims who have been held without charge at Guantánamo Bay. U.S. District Judge Ricardo M. Urbina in Washington, D.C. rejected the Bush administration's position of indefinitely holding the detainees, known as Uighurs, since they are not considered enemy combatants. The Uighurs have been held in Guantánamo for seven years.

The following can be attributed to Jameel Jaffer, Director of the American Civil Liberties Union's National Security Project:

"This is a landmark decision that represents a stinging rejection of the Bush administration's unconstitutional Guantánamo policies. The situation facing the Uighurs is a stark reminder of the legal and moral quagmire of Guantánamo. These individuals were cleared for release, but have been held without charge by this administration in a system that ignores the fundamental tenets of due process. The judge was right to rule that this kind of detention is unlawful because the Constitution prohibits indefinite imprisonment without any charges."

More information about the work of the ACLU's National Security Project is available at: www.aclu.org/safefree/index.html

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