Afghan Detainees Have Right to US Courts: Judge

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 2, 2009 4:41 PM CDT
Wire atop the prison at Gitmo. Detainees in Afghanistan have the same right to US courts, a judge ruled today.   (AP Photo/Mandel Ngan,Pool)

(Newser) – A federal judge overruled both the Bush and the Obama administrations today, declaring that prisoners held at a military base in Afghanistan can challenge their detention in US civilian courts, the New York Times reports. The prisoners deserve the same right that the Supreme Court granted to Gitmo detainees last year, the judge ruled.

The ruling specifically affects three prisoners at Bagram air base who have been held for years as enemy combatants. They want a US court to review the evidence against them, citing the principle of habeas corpus. The judge reserved ruling on a fourth prisoner, saying the right to appeal to US courts must be taken on a case-by-case basis.