Sources: Justice Dept. to disclose memo on why drones can legally be used to kill US citizens

WASHINGTON - The Obama administration plans to disclose a secret memo describing its legal justification for using drones to kill U.S. citizens suspected of terrorism overseas.

The Justice Department has decided not to appeal a court order requiring disclosure of a redacted version of the memo. That's according to two administration officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were authorized to discuss the matter by name.

The U.S. used a drone strike in Yemen in September 2011 to kill Anwar Al-Awlaki, an al-Qaida leader born in the U.S. Some critics complained that it was illegal for the U.S. to kill American citizens away from the battlefield without a trial.

The American Civil Liberties Union and The New York Times sued under the Freedom of Information Act for the memo's release.

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