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Judge Bates’ decision ultimately rests on the same constitutional basis as the Supreme Court’s Boumediene decision: Congress’ nullification of the habeas rights of detainees was invalid under the Suspension Clause, which severely limits the situations in which habeas rights can be taken away. Just as the Boumediene decision cleared the way for more than 200 Guantanamo detainees to challenge their confinement in federal courts, the Bates decision in Al Maqaleh does the same for the three Bagram prisoners. Neither ruling, as issued, settled the final outcome of any of those cases; outcomes must await sometimes lengthy proceedings in District Courts.
Interesting. This is truly a significant extension to Boumediene. Earlier law (from post-WWII Germany, from a case known as Eisentrager) had suggested that no detainee outside the U.S. itself would be covered. But habeus is such a key right (strongly and explicitly protected in the Constitution itself) that this seems correct to me.
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