Moath al-Alwi is a Pakistani Guantanamo Bay prisoner who was detained in 2001 when authorities suspected he had ties to terrorist organizations such as al-Qaeda and the Taliban.
Since then, lawyers and legal representatives for al-Alwi have argued that he is unlawfully being held against his will in the controversial prison. Their argument stems from comments made by former President Obama in 2014 and 2015 when he declared the U.S. war in Afghanistan was over.
On Wednesday, however, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon shut down the argument made for al-Alwi by stating President Trump and his administration are now responsible for establishing whether or not the U.S. is still at war with al-Qaeda and the Taliban.
The judge also ruled that Trump has the right to hold prisoners at the Guantanamo Bay military facility.
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“Although the president announced a change in the military’s focus going forward, he made clear that the United states would continue to engage in active counterterrorism operations in Afghanistan,” Leon wrote in his decision.
Despite the ruling, Professor Ramzi Kassem of the City University of New York School of Law will appeal Leon’s decision, as al-Alwi’s representative:
“Moath al-Alwi has been in U.S. custody for over 15 years. Neither the law of war nor any other set of laws in a civilized society should be read to permit arbitrary or lifetime imprisonment without a fair trial. We will appeal this decision because a higher court must check the president’s assertion that he can continue to imprison Mr. al-Alwi and others at will.”
Earlier in January, President Trump made it clear he has no intentions of giving Guantanamo Bay prisoners a freebie.
There should be no further releases from Gitmo. These are extremely dangerous people and should not be allowed back onto the battlefield.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2017
H/T: Free Beacon
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