September 19, 2007

Amnesty International Responds to the Senate's Failure to Close Debate and Vote on Habeas Amendment

(Washington, DC) - Larry Cox, Amnesty International USA's executive director, issued the following statement in response to today's failed vote on cloture on the Specter-Leahy-Dodd amendment to the U.S. Department of Defense authorization bill to restore habeas corpus:

"The United States Senate missed a major opportunity to demonstrate leadership by failing to provide Senators the opportunity to help re-establish a cornerstone of the U.S. justice system - the right to habeas corpus. By not voting for cloture, the Senate gave up an important chance to help restore the United States' reputation as a nation that respects and adheres to the rule of law.

Amnesty International praises Senators Specter, Leahy and Dodd for their work and all the Senators who voted to reinstate a basic civil right.

Amnesty International encourages the U.S. House of Representatives to allow the question of habeas corpus to be debated in an open forum as a step forward in fixing the disaster Congress created last year by the passage of the Military Commissions Act."

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