Strasbourg must correct this aberrant decision | Belfast and Beyond | 22 Feb 2009 | Amnesty International UK

Strasbourg must correct this aberrant decision

Jacqui Smith, the Home Secretary was jumping for joy this week with the decision of the Law Lords to permit her to press ahead with the deportation of terrorism suspect Abu Qatada to Jordan and two (unnamed) others to Algeria.

I think the Law Lords' decision was an aberrant one and trust that it will be overturned when the appeal goes to the European Court of Human Rights. The Strasbourg court has taken a dim view of any compromises with torture regimes, as demonstrated most recently in the case of Saadi v Italy (2008) which found a breach of Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which prohibits torture and ill-treatment.

If the UK's highest court won't stand up against the government turning a blind eye to torture and undermining both the European Convention and the UN Convention Against Torture, then we must look to the Chamber of the Strasbourg Court to do the job for us.

I discussed the Qatada case this morning on BBC Radio Ulster's Sunday Sequence programme. As ever, there was much more that I wanted to say, but you can listen again (for the next week, anyway) on BBC iPlayer (at 1hr 8mins 27sec).

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