Rep. Vern Buchanan calls for Benghazi terrorist to face military tribunal, not civilian court

June 18, 2014 

Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota, on Wednesday joined congressional Republican calls for the Obama Administration to reconsider the decision to try the captured leader of the 2012 Benghazi attacks in a civilian court rather than a military tribuna.

Abu Khatallah, the suspected organizer of the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attacks that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans, was captured over the weekend in a nighttime raid on Libyan soil. The Obama Administration announced Tuesday that Khatallah would be tried in a civilian court.

Many congressional Republicans disagreed with the decision, and Buchanan was one of them.

“Foreign terrorists who attack the United States should be treated as enemy combatants, not common criminals,” Buchanan said. “By no means should Abu Khatallah be entitled to the same rights as an American citizen. He should be immediately transferred to the U.S. Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba where he can be interrogated, prosecuted and tried in military court.”

A release from Buchanan's office said military tribunals are preferable because they only require a majority vote to convict, sensitive intelligence data can be protected from public release and terror suspects can be held indefinitely.

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