||http://www.defense.gov/news/2009%20MCA%20Pub%20%20Law%20111-84.pdf (last accessed on 16.06.2013)
A Military Commissions Act of 2009, amending some of the provisions of the 2006 Act, was signed on 28 October 2009. While keeping the basic structure of existing military commissions unaltered, the 2009 Act replaces the term ‘unlawful enemy combatant’ with that of ‘unprivileged enemy belligerent’ and lists three alternative criteria under which a person would be qualified as such: the person in question
a) has engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners;
b) has purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners; or
c) was a part of Al Qaeda at the time of the alleged offence under this chapter.
The amendment also provides for increased judicial guarantees. In particular, Section 948r establishes that no statement obtained by the use of torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment, whether or not ‘under color of law’ and as defined in Section 1003 of the Detainee Treatment Act of 2005, would be admissible in a military commission. Also, the Act provides the right of defendants to attend their entire trial and examine all evidence presented against them, to crossexamine witnesses, and to call their own witnesses. Military prosecutors are required to disclose the existence of any exculpatory evidence, as well as any evidence that might impeach the credibility of a government witness. Finally, the new law makes it possible to appeal to the US Court of Military Commission Review, the
federal appeals court in Washington, and the US Supreme Court.