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Guantanamo Detainees Cite Hobby Lobby Ruling in Lawsuit

A surprise beneficiary of the Supreme Court’s recent ruling in US v. Hobby Lobby: two detainees in Guantanamo Bay petitioned a court to stop the US military from preventing them from praying on Ramadan, and cited Hobby Lobby in their motion.

Lawyers for Ahmed Rabbani of Pakistan and Emad Hassan of Yemen, who were prevented from participating on communal Ramadan prayers as punishment for going on a hunger strike, filed the petition in a District of Columbia federal court, arguing that “the deprivation of [their] right to participate in communal prayers violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).”

“The question here is whether Petitioner, as a nonresident alien detainee at Guantánamo Bay, is a
‘person’ whose religious free exercise rights are protected by the RFRA,” they wrote. Thanks to the recent ruling in Hobby Lobby, “the answer to that question is yes, and thus Petitioner is entitled to a TRO protecting his right to pray communally during Ramadan.”

The Department of Defense plans on responding through the legal system.

The full text of the petition can be found at Mother Jones HERE.

[h/t Mother Jones]
[Image via Shane T. McCoy/Wikimedia Commons]

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