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Pentagon Gets OK for Enemy Combatant Trials

An appeals court says the Pentagon can resume criminal trials of some detainees at the Guantanamo prison camp. The military commissions were halted by a lower court, which ruled trials could not proceed until it was decided whether the detainees had the rights of prisoners of war.

Friday, the appeals court ruled that President Bush — and through him, the military — has the right to make that decision and the commissions are an appropriate way to try the detainees. But the judges also said that if prisoners want to protest their commission proceeding, they may appeal to federal civilian courts.

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Jackie Northam is NPR's International Affairs Correspondent. She is a veteran journalist who has spent three decades reporting on conflict, geopolitics, and life across the globe - from the mountains of Afghanistan and the desert sands of Saudi Arabia, to the gritty prison camp at Guantanamo Bay and the pristine beauty of the Arctic.