US supreme court: Nonviolent aid to banned groups tantamount to 'terrorism'

The US Supreme Court has upheld a broad-ranging law that permits Americans who offer advice to banned organizations, including legal assistance and information on conflict resolution, to be prosecuted as terrorists.

The case raised out of human rights advice given by a California group to Kurdish and Tamil organizations that are listed as terrorist groups in the US.

The Supreme Court upheld the Obama administration's argument that also advice intended to be used for peaceful purposes amounted to "material support" for terrorism.
That includes a lawyer submitting a friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of a banned group or helping a banned organization to petition international bodies to bring an end to a violent conflict.

"The supreme court has ruled that human rights advocates, providing training and assistance in the nonviolent resolution of disputes, can be prosecuted as terrorists," declared David Cole, a Georgetown university law professor who argued the case before the court.