U.S. citizen held after capture in Syria must be given a chance to talk to a lawyer, judge says

Members of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces walk inside a prison built by Islamic State at a stadium in Raqqah, Syria, in October. An Amerian citizen accused of fighting for the militant group is being detained in Iraq by the U.S. (Asmaa Waguih / Associated Press)

A U.S. citizen being held without charges in Iraq must be allowed to meet with a lawyer to see if he wants to challenge his detention, a federal judge has ordered.

The man, who is accused of fighting for Islamic State, has been held as an enemy combatant by the military ever since he surrendered to a U.S.-backed militia in Syria in September.

The man hasn’t been charged with a crime, but the U.S. government has continued to detain him while officials try to decide how to handle his case.

In a ruling issued Saturday night, U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan ordered that the American Civil Liberties Union be given “immediate” access to the detainee, either in person or by teleconference, to see if he wants the ACLU or another lawyer to represent him. She also said the government could not monitor the conversation and barred the military from transferring the man to another country.

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Source: Los Angeles Times

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About Cholo Brooks 17213 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.