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US Supreme Court rejects journalist Bilal Abdul Kareem’s ‘kill list’ lawsuit

The United States Supreme Court has rejected a petition to review a case filed by an American journalist based in opposition-held Syria, which accused Washington of placing him on a “kill list” and attempting to assassinate him five times.

The country’s highest court did not give a reason for the denial of Bilal Abdul Kareem’s petition, which stemmed from a lawsuit filed in a Washington DC district court in 2017 against the Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Defense, and several other government agencies.

The district court had dismissed the case in September 2019, after the US invoked the “state secrets” privilege in order to avoid disclosing information on its kill list, which Abdul Kareem argues is unconstitutional and violates his right to due process.

Jennifer Gibson, Reprieve’s project lead on extrajudicial killing, told MEE that the rejection of Abdul Kareem’s petition was a sign that the US government may continue covert military operations and hide them from public scrutiny.

“Today’s decision effectively greenlights the programme to continue operating in the shadows, away from both public purview and any meaningful accountability,” she said.

“The result is that the executive now has the power to kill American citizens and there is nothing they can do about it.”

Read the full story in Middle East Eye.