For Immediate Release
Rights Group Opposes Reconstituted Military Commissions
NEW YORK - Elisa Massimino, CEO and Executive Director of Human Rights First,
today issued the following response to President Obama’s announcement
that he intends to reconstitute military commissions to try suspected
“Tinkering with the machinery of military commissions will not
remove the taint of Guantanamo from future prosecutions. The president
should listen to the many dedicated military lawyers who both defended
and prosecuted cases in the commissions at Guantanamo who have said
that the commissions are irredeemable. We cannot achieve justice by
reverse engineering a process to enhance the likelihood of convictions.
That’s not how we do things in this country. The federal criminal
justice system has credibility and a proven track record of prosecuting
terrorism cases without compromising national security or our
Constitution’s values. President Obama should use it.”
Human Rights First is a non-profit, nonpartisan international human rights organization based in New York and Washington D.C. Human Rights First believes that building respect for human rights and the rule of law will help ensure the dignity to which every individual is entitled and will stem tyranny, extremism, intolerance, and violence.