Supreme Court refuses to bar Guantanamo detainee transfer to Libya

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] refused Tuesday to prevent the US military from transferring Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] detainee Abu Abdul Rauf Zalita to his home country of Libya, rejecting Zalita's arguments that he faced a "grave risk of arbitrary detention, torture, persecution and extrajudicial assassination" after being returned to Libya. In a one-sentence order [PDF text], the Court rejected Zalita's application for an injunction, which was opposed [PDF text; addendum, PDF] by the Bush administration. Solicitor General Paul Clement argued that the Military Commissions Act [PDF text; JURIST news archive] bars US courts from considering Zalita's claims.

Zalita was determined to be an "enemy combatant" in 2005 by a Guantanamo Combatant Status Review Tribunal [DOD materials]. According to Clement's Supreme Court filing, "The unclassified summary of the evidence presented to the CSRT explains that [Zalita] was a member of a known terrorist organization, received weapons training by that group, traveled to Tora Bora, Afghanistan, in December 2001, and then fled to Pakistan, where he was captured." AP has more. SCOTUSblog has additional coverage.

 

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