Gitmo Charges Against 2 Are Dismissed

Judges find flaw that could undermine the case of every other detainee
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 5, 2007 9:01 AM CDT
A Guantanamo detainee, center, is escorted by U.S. military personnel on the grounds of the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay US Naval Base, Cuba, in this May 15, 2007, file photo reviewed by U.S....   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The system of military tribunals for Guantanamo detainees was thrown into chaos yesterday when military judges separately struck down charges against two detainees. The rulings were both on technicalities: the detainees, one 15 years old when captured 5 years ago, were designated "enemy combatants" and not "unlawful enemy combatants" as the law requires.

Military lawyers said the ruling revealed a flaw that would affect every other potential Gitmo case, the New York Times reports. International law defines the latter as combatants who, for example, conceal their weapons and don't wear uniforms. The government will have to either appeal or reclassify the detainees.