EMAIL SIGN UP!
The press releases posted here have been submitted by
For further information or to comment on this press release, please contact the organization directly.
Most Popular This Week
- Movement Rises to Kick 'Corporate Reform' Out of Public Schools
- If Nelson Mandela Really Had Won, He Wouldn't Be Seen as a Universal Hero
- The Great American Class War
- Three Ways the Super-Rich Suck Wealth Out of the Rest of Us
- Let's Get This Straight: AIG Execs Got Bailout Bonuses, but Pensioners Get Cuts
Today's Top News
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Constitution Project Welcomes Federal Prosecution of Some Detainees While Denouncing Use of Military Commissions for Others
Transfer of some detainees suspected of terrorism offenses into federal court consistent with policies called for in Beyond Guantanamo: A Bipartisan Declaration
WASHINGTON - November 13 - Today, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other Guantanamo Bay detainees will
face prosecution in a federal court in New York for the 9/11 terrorist
attacks. Also announced were plans for Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, a
suspect in the U.S.S. Cole bombing, along with four other detainees, to
be tried using military commissions. The Constitution Project welcomes
the decision to prosecute in federal courts some detainees suspected of
acts of terrorism, while expressing concern about the decision to
abandon that system for other detainees in favor of military
"The Obama administration got this partially right, but unfortunately, also partially wrong. Transferring detainees into the federal justice system is the proper way to handle these cases," said Virginia Sloan, president of the Constitution Project. "But military commissions risk circumventing our constitutional system of justice in favor of a system rigged for convictions and where justice cannot be a result."
Just last week, over 125 prominent Americans called on the Obama administration and Congress to support a policy for closing Guantanamo that is consistent with our constitutional principles and our country's security. Beyond Guantanamo: A Bipartisan Declaration was joined by former members of Congress, diplomats, military officials, federal judges and prosecutors, national security and foreign policy experts, bar leaders, and others.
"I congratulate the Department of Justice for its decision to try high-level individuals suspected of involvement in the 9/11 attacks in the U.S. justice system," said William S. Sessions, former director of the FBI, federal judge, and signatory to Beyond Guantanamo. "The federal courts are the right place for these trials, with the appropriate experience in balancing the needs of national security and the protection of classified information with the rights of the defendants to a fair trial."
An effort coordinated by the Constitution Project and Human Rights First, the Declaration supports federal court prosecution of terrorism suspects and opposes indefinite detention without charge. Days after its release, it was cited on the Senate floor by Senator Patrick Leahy, during debate on an amendment that would have barred the transfer of some detainees into the federal justice system for trial. Senator Leahy had this to say:
Responding to John Cornyn (R-TX), who earlier today criticized the administration's decision to bring the detainees to the United States for trial, Declaration signatory Bob Barr, a former U.S. Attorney and Republican Member of Congress from Georgia, said:
Daniel S. Seikaly, former federal prosecutor and CIA official, and another Declaration signer, said:
To view the Declaration and a list of its signatories, go to: