The Obama administration is promising to change the way travelers can ask to be removed from its no-fly list of suspected terrorists banned from air travel. The decision comes after a federal judge's ruling that there was no meaningful way to challenge the designation, a situation deemed unconstitutional. In response, the Justice Department said the U.S. will change the process during the next six months. As of late last summer, about 48,000 people were on the no-fly list.
The no-fly list is one of the government's most controversial post-9/11 counterterrorism programs because of its lack of due process, long criticized because people cannot know why they were placed on the list and lack a way to fight the decision. Changing how people can challenge their designation could amount to one of the government's most significant adjustments to how it manages the list. "It's long past time for the government to revamp its general procedures," said Hina Shamsi, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union.