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Category Archives: Guantanamo: Litigation

Article III and the al Bahlul Remand: The New, New NIMJ Amicus Brief

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Monday, August 18, 2014 at 12:59 PM

On July 14, the en banc D.C. Circuit ruled in al Bahlul v. United States that “plain error” review applied to Bahlul’s ex post facto challenge to his military commission convictions for conspiracy, material support, and solicitation–and then upheld the first of those charges under such deferential review (while throwing out the latter two). One of the potentially unintended consequences of the Court . . .
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Petitioner Files Opening Brief in Al Bahlul v. United States

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Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Petitioner Ali al Bahlul, the Yemeni detainee who served as Osama bin Laden’s personal assistant and public relations secretary, has just filed his opening brief in Al Bahlul v. United States, in an attempt to overturn his military commission conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes. In the filing, al Bahlul argues that he was tried for . . .
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Another Bad Day for Another Guantanamo Detainee in the Courts

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Thursday, August 7, 2014 at 3:42 PM

This time, it’s Mohammed Al-Adahi (remember him?). The opinion is by Judge Gladys Kessler. It reads in relevant part: Petitioner remains conditionally cleared for release since the action of the [Guantanamo] Task Force. Petitioner alleges that his health has declined so substantially that the possibility of “any significant physical activity—much less any involvement in the hostilities—is virtually impossible ….[T]herefore, no . . .
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District Court Opinion in Al Odah v. United States

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Tuesday, August 5, 2014 at 12:09 PM

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has granted the government’s motion to dismiss Fawzi Khalid Abdullah Fahad Al Odah’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus and declaratory judgment in a 21-page opinion issued on August 3. Al Odah has been detained at Guantanamo Bay since 2002. He was arrested by Pakistani border guards in . . .
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A Nugget of Real News in General Martins’s Statement

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Monday, August 4, 2014 at 7:36 AM

Last night, Wells posted a statement by Military Commissions Chief Prosecutor Mark Martins about the weeklong Nashiri hearing getting under way today at Guantanamo. The statement contains the following sentence: “I also assess at the present time that there are no additional prosecutions against Guantanamo detainees that would be made possible by the existence in the military . . .
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David Remes on the Counsel Access Case

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Saturday, August 2, 2014 at 6:30 PM

David Remes, an attorney representing Guantanamo detainees–and, in particular, co-counsel for the petitioner in Hatim–writes in with this comment on Friday’s ruling in that case from the D.C. Circuit: The D.C. Circuit’s decision is disappointing, but in a sense it is anticlimactic. The government effectively won the case over a year ago, when the court stayed Judge . . .
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ECHR: Poland’s Role in CIA Black Site Violated Detainees’ Human Rights

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Thursday, July 24, 2014 at 10:08 AM

The European Court of Human Rights (“ECHR”) today handed down a pair of judgments in long-running human rights cases brought against Poland by two U.S. terrorism detainees—Abu Zubaydah and Abd Al Rahim Hussayn Muhammad Al Nashiri.  As is well known, both had alleged violations of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, . . .
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Another Day, Another Former Guantanamo Detainee Can’t Get Back in Court

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014 at 8:17 PM

This time it’s Mohammad Rimi, transferred to Libya back in 2006. The judge is Richard Leon. Here’s the opinion. Here’s the order.

Bahlul: A Longer View

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014 at 6:46 AM

Steve says of yesterday’s Bahlul decision. Whether or not you agree with the result of today’s decision, the D.C. Circuit has done no one any favors–not the government, which will still be terribly uncertain as to which cases it can and can’t bring; not the defendants, for obvious reasons; not the public; and, most importantly, not the commissions–the fragility . . .
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Interesting New Habeas Argument in the D.C. Circuit

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Friday, July 11, 2014 at 7:18 AM

This case has been kicking around the district court for a while, but has now made it to the D.C. Circuit. Ahmed Adnan Ajam is basically arguing that the executive branch wants to release him and the transfer restrictions on its doing so represent an unconstitutional infringement of presidential power. He lost in the district court on . . .
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Hobby Lobby at Guantanamo?

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Monday, July 7, 2014 at 9:39 AM

Have a look at this emergency motion for a temporary restraining order, filed Thursday by attorneys for Guantanamo detainee Imad Hassan. It opens: This motion seeks a temporary restraining order (TRO) prohibiting Respondents from depriving Petitioner of the right to participate in communal prayers during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, which commenced this year on June 28. . . .
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Global (Statutory) Habeas After Aamer

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Wednesday, June 25, 2014 at 4:00 PM

As my co-authors and I put the finishing touches on the 2014-15 Supplement to Aspen Publishers’ National Security Law and Counterterrorism Law casebooks, I had another thought about the potential consequences of the D.C. Circuit’s February 2014 decision in Aamer v. Obama—about which I’ve blogged a fair amount previously. Recall that, in Aamer, the D.C. Circuit held that the Supreme Court’s decision . . .
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Relitigating Guantánamo: A Modest Quibble with John’s Post on Abu Khattala

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Wednesday, June 18, 2014 at 2:43 PM

It’s refreshing to find voices of reason in Ben’s, Jack’s, and John’s posts on the Abu Khattala capture. Jack’s post, in particular, provides a lucid exposition of what any number of congressional Republicans should not have needed to have explained to them: That the absence of a connection to al Qaeda categorically resolves in the . . .
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Allaithi v. Rumsfeld: D.C. Circuit Affirms

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Tuesday, June 10, 2014 at 2:06 PM

A three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit handed down its decision in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld today, affirming the district court’s ruling that six detainees subjected to prolonged detention and alleged mistreatment at Guantanamo did not sufficiently allege that the officials who authorized and supervised their detention acted outside the scope of their employment. At the outset, Judge Brown (also writing . . .
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Government Files Response to Al Janko’s Petition for Rehearing En Banc

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Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at 8:22 PM

Today the government filed its response opposing Abdul Rahim Abdul Razak al Janko’s petition for an en banc rehearing. Back in January, a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision that 28 U.S.C. § 2241(e)(2) bars the ex-detainee from bringing a damages action against U.S. officials for imprisoning him in Afghanistan and at Guantanamo. Al Janko’s March 31 . . .
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Abstention, Balancing the Equities, and Armed Conflict in Al-Nashiri: A Reply to Steve Vladeck and Kevin Jon Heller

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Wednesday, May 7, 2014 at 7:35 AM

There’s much common ground evident in Steve’s reply to my earlier post on the effort of Abd Al-Nashiri, the accused mastermind of the USS Cole bombing, to enjoin his military commission trial.  Steve and I agree that the central question is whether the federal district court should abstain from exercising jurisdiction. Moreover, Steve is clearly right that . . .
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Confusing Jurisdiction, Abstention, and Substance: A Reply to Peter Margulies

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at 3:00 PM

It’s clear from his post this morning that my friend Peter Margulies believes that Al-Nashiri’s new habeas challenge to his trial by military commission, which rests on the claim that the United States was not involved in an armed conflict with al Qaeda at the time of his alleged crimes, is without merit. Unfortunately, Peter’s . . .
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Al-Nashiri, the Cole Bombing, and the Start of the Conflict with Al-Qaeda

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at 10:00 AM

The habeas challenge to military commissions recently filed by Abd Al Rahim Al-Nashiri is a loser on both procedure and substance.  Al-Nashiri, the alleged mastermind of the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole, argues that a federal court can, and should, enjoin his pending commission trial because the charges against him concern acts that occurred . . .
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Marty Lederman on Justice Breyer’s Hussain Opinion

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Sunday, April 27, 2014 at 7:06 AM

Very interesting and thoughtful comments over at Just Security by Marty Lederman on Justice Breyer’s brief opinion in the Hussain cert denial the other day. Marty writes: As Justice Breyer notes . . ., the Supreme Court has never actually opined on whether being a member of Taliban forces, standing alone, is sufficient for AUMF detention.  Justice O’Connor’s controlling . . .
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D.C. Circuit Affirms Denial of Preliminary Injunction in Abdullah v. Obama

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Friday, April 4, 2014 at 12:52 PM

The D.C. Circuit has just handed down a 12-page decision in Abdullah v. Obama, affirming the district court’s denial of Abdullah’s motion to enjoin the U.S. government from detaining him. Hani Saleh Rashid Abdullah, a Yemeni national, claimed his detention at Guantanamo violates a 1946 executive agreement between the U.S. and Yemen. He filed for habeas in 2005, and . . .
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