Obama Ducks Question of Libyan Raid’s Legality

Officials Say Obama Can Keep Captive Libyan Indefinitely at Sea

The Saturday raid in Libya, which saw US ground troops marching into the capital city of Tripoli without any permission from the Libyan government and kidnapping a Libyan citizen at gunpoint has fueled considerable controversy, and questions about whether or not it violated international law.

President Obama was presented the question today and refused to answer, taking a long pause and then insisting only that he has considerable secret evidence against the captive, Anas al-Liby.

Amnesty International and others have argued that launching military operations just to abduct suspects abroad violates international law, and was doubly concerning in that Liby’s family hasn’t been informed officially of his detention or of any charges against him, and that the only way they knew who had kidnapped him was from the news.

The evidence against Liby seems very much beside the point since the administration doesn’t appear to have even attempted to have him extradited, and officials argue that the US can legally just keep Liby detained at sea for as long as it wants, so presenting that evidence to an actual court seems low priority.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.