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December 10, 2022

Obama OKs resumption of Guantanamo military commissions

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama announced Monday that the United States will resume using military commissions to prosecute alleged terrorists held at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention facility, CNN reports.

In the announcement, the president said his administration remains committed to closing the controversial detention facility but will rescind its previous suspension on bringing new charges before military commissions. The commissions are military proceedings rather than trials in civilian courts.Obama also called for prosecuting Guantanamo detainees in U.S. criminal courts when appropriate, and issued an executive order calling for periodic reviews of suspects held under indefinite detention.

The steps followed through on Obama’s previous call to reform the process of prosecuting or holding Guantanamo detainees to make it more in line with international laws and standards, according to senior administration officials who briefed reporters on condition of not being identified by name. However, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights both criticized the administration for what they called institutionalizing indefinite detention of terrorism suspects who have yet to be formally charged or designated for transfer to another country, but are considered too dangerous to set free.

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