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Category Archives: Guantanamo: Litigation

D.C. Circuit Denies Rehearing En Banc in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld

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Tuesday, November 18, 2014 at 6:23 PM

The D.C. Circuit has just issued a per curiam order denying six Guantanamo detainees’ petition for rehearing en banc in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld. The detainees sought review of the D.C. Circuit’s June 10, 2014 decision affirming the ruling below on the grounds that the case raises two questions of exceptional importance: as to (1) whether detainees are “persons” under the Religious Freedom . . .
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U.S. Delegation Asserts Article 16 of Convention Against Torture Applies Outside U.S. Territority in Certain Circumstances, but Law of Armed Conflict “Takes Precedence” In Situations of Armed Conflict

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014 at 2:10 PM

As previewed by Charlie Savage in the New York Times this morning, the U.S. delegation appeared before the Committee Against Torture in Geneva today and announced a modest but important change in the U.S. Government position regarding extraterritorial application of Article 16 of the Convention Against Torture (which prohibits cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment in . . .
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Court Denies Preliminary Injunction in GTMO Force-Feeding Case

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Monday, November 10, 2014 at 11:15 AM

On Friday, Judge Gladys Kessler of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia denied detainee Abu Wa’el Dhiab’s bid for a preliminary injunction against certain Guantanamo force-feeding procedures. The court’s memorandum opinion concludes as follows: For the reasons stated above, the Court concludes that the Petitioner’s Application for a Preliminary Injunction must be . . .
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ICYMI: Coverage of Last Week’s Hearing in Al-Nashiri

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Monday, November 10, 2014 at 10:44 AM

ICYMI, GTMO policy folks: Matt Danzer’s final round of digests on last week’s hearing in United States v. Al-Nashiri can be found below, and in our “Events Coverage” section.  (Earlier coverage of the hearing is here, too.) Enjoy. 11/5 Session #4: Statements, Transcripts, and Questionnaires 11/6 Session: Fighting Over MRIs and Hearsay

D.C. Circuit Denies En Banc Rehearing in Hatim v. Obama, Counsel-Access Case

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Friday, October 31, 2014 at 7:00 PM

The D.C. Circuit has just issued a per curiam order denying the detainees’ petition for an en banc rehearing in Hatim v. Obama. So ends—for the time being—Saeed Mohammed Saleh Hatim, Abdurrahman al-Shubati and Fadel Hentif’s bid to reinstate District Chief Judge Lamberth’s July 2013 ruling as to the unconstitutionality of the challenged Guantanamo security . . .
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Evidence of Absence: A Brief Reply to Peter Margulies on the al Bahlul Argument

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Thursday, October 23, 2014 at 9:55 AM

In light of both our prior exchange and my Just Security post from yesterday, I only have two new points to make in response to Peter Margulies’ post on yesterday’s D.C. Circuit oral argument in al Bahlul v. United States, which raises the question whether military commissions may constitutionally try offenses that are not recognized as international war crimes. As I . . .
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Government Files Response in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld

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Wednesday, October 22, 2014 at 12:48 PM

The government has filed its response to six Guantanamo detainees’ August 25, 2014 petition for en banc rehearing in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld. The detainees argued that (1) the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores Inc., 134 S. Ct. 2751 (2014) established that they were entitled to freedom from substantial burdens on their . . .
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Government Files Response in Hatim v. Obama

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014 at 4:30 PM

Today the government filed a short response to the detainees’ petition for an en banc rehearing in Hatim v. Obama, the Guantanamo counsel-access case. Recall that last month the D.C. Circuit ordered the United States to respond to a joint motion filed by Saeed Mohammed Saleh Hatim, Abdurrahman al-Shubati and Fadel Hentif. The detainees are seeking review of a . . .
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Petitioner Files Reply in Bahlul v. United States

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Petitioner Ali al-Bahlul filed his reply brief yesterday in Bahlul v. United States, the D.C. Circuit case that will decide whether a military commission may render a stand-alone conspiracy conviction. In the new filing, petitioner makes a point of rejecting the government’s claim for plain error review before elaborating on the four arguments put forth in his opening brief. The argument . . .
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Judge Kessler’s Videotape Order and the Costs of Crying Wolf

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Saturday, October 4, 2014 at 9:57 AM

The First Amendment question in Judge Kessler’s opinion in support of her Order directing the videotapes of Abu Wa’el Dhiab’s forced feedings to be unsealed (see Jane’s summary) is whether the public’s presumptive right of access is outweighed by the government’s well-specified “compelling interest” in keeping the classified tapes sealed.  The Government claims there are five . . .
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Judge Kessler Orders Release of Guantanamo Force-Feeding Videos

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Friday, October 3, 2014 at 7:30 PM

An important development today in Dhiab v. Obama: over the government’s objections, D.C. District Court Judge Gladys Kessler has ordered the unsealing of secret videos that show Guantanamo Bay prisoner Abu Wa’el Dhiab being forcibly extracted from his cell and force-fed. Back in June, a number of media outlets, including the New York Times and the Associated Press, sought . . .
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Confusing the Issues in al Bahlul

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Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 10:11 PM

For the two people still following the exchange between me and Peter Margulies over the bottom-side briefing in the al Bahlul D.C. Circuit military commission appeal, I wanted to offer a very quick (and hopefully final) word in response to Peter’s surreply from this afternoon, in an effort to crystallize the true points of departure between . . .
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Why Article III Matters: A Reply to Peter Margulies on al Bahlul

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 10:23 PM

I must confess that I don’t fully understand Peter Margulies’ response to my post from earlier today. My post argued that the bottom-side briefing in the D.C. Circuit in al Bahlul offers a relatively weak (and, in my view, already debunked) explanation for why Congess can allow allow military commissions to try enemy belligerents for wholly domestic offenses without . . .
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Article III and the Bottom-Side Briefing in al Bahlul

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 12:02 PM

Jane already flagged the merits brief filed by the U.S. government on September 17 in al Bahlul v. United States, the major challenge to the power of the Guantánamo military commissions to try non-international war crimes that was remanded by the en banc D.C. Circuit to the original three-judge panel back in July (and in which oral argument is . . .
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Government Files Response in Al Bahlul v. United States

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Thursday, September 18, 2014 at 6:57 AM

Last month Guantanamo detainee Ali al Bahlul filed his opening brief in Al Bahlul v. United States, in a bid to overturn his conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes, the single military commission conviction against Bahlul that the D.C. Circuit left standing in its July 14, 2014 en banc ruling (the court vacated his convictions for material support and . . .
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Appellees File for En Banc Rehearing in Hatim v. Obama

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014 at 10:00 AM

Yesterday petitioner-appellees Saeed Mohammed Saleh Hatim, Abdurrahman al-Shubati and Fadel Hentif filed a joint motion for en banc rehearing in Hatim v. Obama, the counsel access case. The detainees seek review of a three-judge D.C. Circuit panel’s August 1, 2014 decision upholding the constitutionality of security procedures instituted at Guantanamo in 2012 and 2013, including genital searches before and after detainees . . .
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CA2 Affirms SDNY Denial of FOIA Suit for Al-Qahtani Photos

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Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 11:41 AM

That seems to be the sum and substance of the Second Circuit’s ruling today.  The 3-judge panel’s decision opens: Appellant Center for Constitutional Rights seeks disclosure by the government, pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”), of certain videos and photographs of a high profile Guantanamo Bay detainee, Mohammed al‐Qahtani, who is believed to be the so‐called “20th hijacker” . . .
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Detainees File Petition for Rehearing En Banc in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014 at 8:58 AM

Yesterday, plaintiff-appellants in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld filed their petition for a rehearing en banc, two months after the D.C. Circuit affirmed 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 . . .
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Abdul Razak Ali Replies to His Own Cert Petition

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Saturday, August 23, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Here’s a novelty: Guantanamo detainee Abdul Razak Ali—whose case we have written about a fair bit—has filed a reply brief in response to his own cert petition. Here’s how it opens: Petitioner Abdul Razak Ali respectfully submits this reply brief in further support of his petition for certiorari with respect to the Decision and Order of the . . .
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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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