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Executive Order Being Drafted for Indefinite Detention

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- A White House official confirms that officials are writing a draft executive order dealing with those Guantanamo detainees to be held in indefinite detention, setting up a periodic review of the detention status "of those detainees who cannot be tried in Article III or military commissions" and are too dangerous, in the government's judgment, to release.

In a speech at the National Archives in May 2009, President Obama acknowledged that his way forward in dealing with the terrorist threat would include indefinite detention.

"There remains the question of detainees at Guantanamo who cannot be prosecuted yet who pose a clear danger to the American people," he said in that speech. "And I have to be honest here -- this is the toughest single issue that we will face.  We're going to exhaust every avenue that we have to prosecute those at Guantanamo who pose a danger to our country. But even when this process is complete, there may be a number of people who cannot be prosecuted for past crimes, in some cases because evidence may be tainted, but who nonetheless pose a threat to the security of the United States. Examples of that threat include people who've received extensive explosives training at al Qaeda training camps, or commanded Taliban troops in battle, or expressed their allegiance to Osama bin Laden, or otherwise made it clear that they want to kill Americans.  These are people who, in effect, remain at war with the United States."

The official noted that the draft order has not yet reached President Obama's desk.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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