Obama administration appeals against ruling on indefinite detention
The Obama administration has decided to appeal against the decision of Manhattan Federal Judge who ruled against the power of government to detain individuals indefinitely.
The judge issued an injunction in May preventing the US federal authorities from enforcing section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act's "Homeland Battlefield". The judge was ruling on a complaint filed by civil rights activists as well as many reporters who feared they could be hauled into jail without constitutional protection under the law.
The judge ruled in favour of the plaintiffs because the US Government failed to clarify whether aiding the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks in the case of Birgitta Jonsdottir, a member of parliament in Iceland - would fall under the scope of the provision.
The Obama administration argues the law will only be used against domestic and foreign terrorist threats however, the activists do not find that convincing enough.
The plaintiffs have called for the injunction to be permanent but the US attorney office in New York along with named defendents US President Barrack Obama and Defence Secretary Leon Panetta have filed their arguments against such an injunction.
The Federal Government argues that the law is not too broad and neither is too vague. The filing goes on to say that the plaintiffs "cannot point to a single example of the military's detaining anyone for engaging in conduct even remotely similar to the type of expressive activities they allege could lead to detention”.
The US Government has already filed with the US Circuit Court of Appeals expressing their intent to appeal the decision of Manhattan Court Federal Judge Katherine Forrest.