ACLU Supports Moving Terror Suspect to U.S. Court but Questions Unlawful Military Detention

July 6, 2011 1:23 pm

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NEW YORK – The American Civil Liberties Union today expressed support for the transfer of terror suspect Ahmed Abdulkadir Warsame to the federal criminal justice system. But his imprisonment and interrogation for over two months aboard a Navy ship raises serious questions about unlawful detention.

The following can be attributed to Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU National Security Project:

“We welcome the announcement that the Obama administration will prosecute Warsame in the criminal justice system. Unlike the discredited military commissions, federal courts are able to achieve justice and unquestionably have jurisdiction over the material support and conspiracy crimes with which Warsame is charged. But the Obama administration has put a criminal conviction at risk by holding Warsame in unlawful military detention for over two months. The government could have obtained intelligence through law enforcement rather than military interrogation, as it successfully has in hundreds of terrorism cases, without jeopardizing its criminal case. We are deeply concerned that the Obama administration continues to assert a worldwide war authority wherever terrorism suspects are found, and it is incumbent upon Congress to impose necessary and wise limitations on the administration.”

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