Thursday, June 29, 2006

Supreme Court rules Guantanamo tribunals 'illegal'

Breaking news, this from Jon Snow at Channel 4.

"Well, after years of America's critics hammering on about Guantanamo, tonight a significant moment. In short, the American Constitution has stepped in to pronounce that the tribunal process for those 'enemy combatants' held in that offshore centre, is illegal.

According to the Supreme Court, the Bush regime has quite simply systemically flouted the Geneva Convention ever since the place was set up five years ago. The camp was established deliberately sited on Cuba to avoid coming under US legal jurisdiction.

The inmates were declared 'enemy combatants' somehow to enable them to be punished beneath the radar of the Geneva Convention. Well today the Supreme Court, three of whose members have been appointed by George Bush, has ruled that the process by which the president sought to try the inmates - Military Commissions, are illegal within the terms of the Geneva Convention.

What this ruling means is that the Supreme Court regards Guantanamo as within its jurisdiction, and regards the inmates as qualifying to be treated under the terms of the Geneva Convention.

I've seen one quote suggesting that this is the biggest and most important Supreme Court ruling since 1801. The only problem is finding out what it was they ruled in on 1801 - but boy it must have been important…

This does not close Guantanamo but it must be one of the largest nails ever hammered into the lid of its coffin."

Also, the link for this weekend's "Pride" event is here. Sorry it didn't make the calender.


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