WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Obama has ordered government lawyers to object to the planned release of additional detainee photos, the White House said Wednesday.
The Defense Department was set to release hundreds of photographs showing alleged abuse of prisoners in detention facilities in Afghanistan and Iraq.
"The president was concerned about harm to the troops," White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Wednesday afternoon. "The president, as you all know, met with his legal team last week because he did not feel comfortable with the release of the photos."
Gibbs added, "the president reflected on this case and believes that they have the potential to pose harm to the troops. ... Nothing is added by the release of the photos."
The release was ordered in response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by the American Civil Liberties Union. It followed Obama's decision to release Bush-era CIA documents showing that the United States used techniques like waterboarding, considered torture by the current administration.
But the announcement Wednesday is a reversal of what Gibbs said April 24, when he argued that the White House had no problem releasing the photos, based on the court decisions handed down.