A Pakistani lawyer who has presided over lawsuits against the United States government for its drone attacks in his country blasted the CIA for expanding its strategy in Yemen to include drone strikes on suspected terrorists.
According to the Associated Press, the authorization will allow the CIA to kill suspected terrorists, even if they aren’t able to identify who the suspect is, but only with Yemeni permission. If a suspect is determined to be of low importance, permission to kill will be denied. But Shahzad Akbar, an attorney with the Pakistani Foundation for Fundamental Rights said in Washington, D.C. Thursday that the move only gives the CIA less incentive to discover suspects’ identities.
“They can’t kill them if they know someone is a low value target, however they can kill if they don’t know that person,” he said. “We were confused reading about it this morning.”
Pardiss Kebriaei, a lawyer with the Center for Constitutional Rights who filed charges (and lost in court) against the Obama administration for overstepping his bounds in ordering the killing of suspected terrorist and American citizen Anwar al-Awlaki, says that the “level of authority [granted in Yemen] is new.”