Obama Reluctantly Signs Law That Steps Back Gitmo Closing
President Obama has signed a bill that says prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay cannot be brought to the United States for trial. But because it was tied to an appropriations bill he said he had no choice and that he was signing it reluctantly.
Making plain he would fight to repeal language in the law obstructing civilian U.S. trials for Guantanamo terrorism suspects, Obama said he was left with no choice but to sign the defense authorization act for fiscal 2011.
“Despite my strong objection to these provisions, which my administration has consistently opposed, I have signed this act because of the importance of authorizing appropriations for, among other things, our military activities in 2011,” Obama said in a statement.
Obama still intends to close the prison and will work to repeal that part of the law.
The bill includes sections blocking funding for the transfer of suspects from the Guantanamo prison to the United States. It also restricts the use of funds to ship them to other countries, unless specified conditions are met.
“The prosecution of terrorists in federal court is a powerful tool in our efforts to protect the nation and must be among the options available to us,” Obama said. “Any attempt to deprive the executive branch of that tool undermines our nation’s counterterrorism efforts.”Click here for reuse options!
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