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Federal judge rules Chinese Gitmo detainees can be held indefinitely

[JURIST] A federal judge ruled Thursday that two Chinese Uighur detainees held by the US at Guantanamo Bay could be detained there indefinitely even though their imprisonment was unlawful. US District Judge James Robertson said that the courts simply had no relief to offer the men, who are no longer deemed enemy combatants by the government [JURIST report] but who cannot be returned to China, where they could face death or torture because of their Muslim faith [Human Rights Watch report]. Robertson said an order requiring their release inside the United States was not feasible for a variety of security and diplomatic reasons. Read Robertson's memorandum ruling [PDF] and accompanying order [PDF]. AP has more. Robertson, who had previously been publicly critical of the Uighurs' continuing detention [JURIST report], made headlines earlier this week in another context when he resigned from on the 11-member Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court [JURIST report] after reportedly expressing concern about a program authorized by President Bush to conduct warrantless wiretaps on international communications by US residents with known links to al Qaeda or other terrorist organizations.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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