At a Glance
On July 11, 2016, the Department of Defense announced Davliatov's transfer to Serbia.
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP
Reed Smith LLP
Davliatov v. Obama was a habeas corpus case on behalf of Muhammadi Davliatov, a native of Tajikistan. Davliatov was detained without charge at Guantánamo Bay for more than 14 years, despite being cleared for release for more than six years. On July 11, 2016, the Department of Defense announced Davliatov's transfer to Serbia.
Nearly ten years before his release, Davliatov filed a habeas corpus petition in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, challenging the legality of his initial capture and detention, which was never resolved on the merits. In 2009, the government deemed his detention no longer necessary and for that reason stated that it would exercise its discretion to release him. The government obtained a stay of his habeas case, over his objections, based on its repeated representations to the court that: (1) his detention was no longer at issue; (2) he would be transferred expeditiously; (3) he would not suffer undue prejudice because transfer efforts were unlikely to be affected by further litigation of his case; and (4) the government had already agreed to provide the only relief that he could obtain in habeas, i.e., release from Guantánamo. Davliatov’s habeas case was subsequently withdrawn without prejudice more than two years ago while he awaited his promised transfer.
On November 5, 2015, attorneys filed a new habeas petition on Davliatov's behalf challenging the legality of his continuing indefinite detention. They also filed a motion for judgment and an order granting his petition, asking the court to issue an order compelling the government to do what it said it would do many years ago without a court order―release him. On December 23, 2015, the government filed an opposition to Davliatov's motion for judgment and a cross-motion to dismiss his habeas case, arguing that notwithstanding its prior representations to the court it has legal authority to hold him indefinitely and potentially for the remainder of his life without charge. The government also attempted to absolve itself of responsibility for its failure to transfer Davliatov over more than seven years, blaming the court and Davliatov himself for its dilatory conduct. Indeed, while government offered general assertions about its desire and intent to transfer Davliatov, it provided no assurance that he will actually be transferred in the near future without a court order. On January 20, 2016, Davliatov filed a reply brief in further support of his motion for judgment, and in opposition to the government’s motion to dismiss. Among other arguments, the reply brief included a supporting declaration from Davliatov’s lead counsel correcting several factual errors in the government’s brief. The government then filed a reply in support of its cross-motion to dismiss.