Thursday, June 10, 2010
The D.C. Circuit on Tuesday released an opinion rejecting the claims of Adham Mohammed Ali Awad, a Yemeni detainee at Guantanamo Bay who was surrendered to Afghan forces in 2001, and immediately turned over to U.S. forces in Afghanistan, after a two-month allied siege of a hospital occupied by al Qaeda fighters.
The D.C. Circuit ruled in Awad v. Obama that the government satisfied due process by proving its authority to continue to detain Awad with a mere preponderance of the evidence--not requiring the higher standard of clear and convincing evidence, as Awad argued. The D.C. Circuit wrote that this holding reaffirms its January 2010 ruling in Al-Bihani v. Obama, which followed the plurality decision in Hamdi v. Rumsfeld. The court also rejected Awad's arguments that the government failed to show that he would continue to pose a threat if released and that he was in the "command structure" of al Qaeda. The court ruled that under Al-Bihani and the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), the government need not show either. Instead, under Al-Bihani the government satisfied its burden by showing continued hostilities, and under the AUMF the government satisfied its burden by showing that Awad was "part of" al Qaeda.