KEEPING AMERICA SAFE: President Trump is fulfilling his commitment to use all available tools to defeat terrorism and protect the United States homeland and its interests abroad.
- The President has signed an executive order on “Protecting America Through Lawful Detention Of Terrorists.”
- The Executive Order accomplishes the following:
- Revokes the section of the previous administration’s Executive Order ordering the closing of the detention facilities at U.S. Naval Station Guantanamo Bay (GTMO);
- Affirms that the United States maintains the option to detain additional enemy combatants at GTMO when necessary;
- Requires the Secretary of Defense to recommend criteria to the President for determining disposition outcomes of individuals the United States captures in connection with armed conflict, including criteria for transfer to GTMO; and
- Highlights that the existing periodic review process would be used to determine whether continued detention is necessary for any future GTMO detainees.
KEEPING AMERICA PREPARED: President Trump understands the threats that still face the U.S. and pose a threat to its citizens.
- Today, the United States remains engaged in an armed conflict with al-Qa’ida, the Taliban, and associated forces, including with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
- The President maintains authority to detain certain persons as part of his Constitutional powers as Commander in Chief and Chief Executive and those provided by the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) of September 18, 2001.
- The AUMF authorizes the United States to detain certain persons who are part of or provide substantial support to al-Qa’ida, the Taliban, or associated forces engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners.
- Decisions regarding the disposition of captured terrorists will be made on a case-by-case basis, taking into account legal requirements and the facts of each case.
- The Executive Order would preserve military detention as a counterterrorism tool by maintaining the detention facilities at U.S. Naval Station Guantanamo Bay (GTMO), Cuba, and stating unequivocally that the United States reserves the right to detain terrorists under the law of armed conflict.
KEEPING THE THREAT AT BAY: The President’s new action is vital to preserving the tools and capabilities necessary to end the terror threat.
- The Executive Order preserves a vital tool to protect the United States and its citizens from continuing significant threats.
- The detention of enemies captured in an armed conflict is a lawful and necessary tool of warfighting that must continue to be available to the United States.
- More than one hundred detainees released from the Guantanamo Bay facilities have reengaged in combat, and some have killed Coalition and American citizens.