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RIZ KHAN

U-turn on Gitmo?

Will the restart of tribunals delay the closing of the Guantanamo detention facility?

Last updated: 22 May 2009 10:14
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President Barack Obama will restart military tribunals for a small number of Guantanamo detainees, reviving a Bush-era trial system he once described as "flawed." He has, however, outlined five rule changes aimed at bolstering defendants' rights - including strict limits on the use of coerced evidence and tougher restrictions on the use of hearsay evidence. Still, experts say the tribunals are so flawed that no amount of improvement will be able to dispel impressions that they are rigged to deliver convictions.

President Obama ordered the Guantanamo detention facility closed by Jan. 22, 2010, fulfilling one of his campaign promises within two days of taking office, but will the decision to restart the tribunals delay the prison closing by next January?

On Tuesday, Riz speaks with Glenn M. Sulmasy associate professor of Law at the US Coast Guard Academy and an expert in national security law. He is the author of the forthcoming book "The National Security Court System: A Natural Evolution of Justice in an Age of Terror"; also joining the programme is David Kaye, a former State Department staff lawyer with responsibility for the law of war. He is currently the executive director of the UCLA School of Law's International Human Rights program.

This episode of the Riz Khan show aired on Tuesday, May 19, 2009.

Source:
Al Jazeera
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