Bin Laden Photos Ruling: Late Al Qaeda Leader's Death Pics Remain Classified

Death photos of Osama Bin Laden will remain classified, ruled the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The three-judge panel allowed the US government to keep images of the late Al Qaeda leader’s dead body secret.

Sky News US Team reports via Yahoo! News that the Freedom of Information Act request made by non-profit watchdog Judicial Watch, to gain access to around 50 images of Bin Laden after he died, was unanimously rejected.

Photos of the slain terrorist leader, taken after US Navy Seals shot him dead during a raid in his hideout in Abbottabad, Pakistan in 2011, has been kept classified. The US government argued that the images, if released, could “be used to inflame tensions” and “inspire retaliatory attacks.”

Judicial Watch, the report said, argued that the release of the photos posing serious risk to national security has not been adequately proven. The appellate court, however, ruled that the images could expose “classified intelligence methods” and releasing of Bin Laden’s burial photos could trigger “violence against American citizens.”

Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton said in a statement that the court should stop “rubber-stamping this administration’s improper secrecy.”

“There is no provision of the Freedom of Information Act that allows documents to be kept secret because their release might offend our terrorist enemies,” he said, according to the report.

The ruling has sparked an online debate. Some social media users argue that terrorists do still target Americans with or without the Osama Bin Laden death photos getting released.