Abu Qatada

Abu QatadaEvery picture tells a story. This one more than most. It is credited to the RAF (Royal Air Force), MoD (Ministry of Defence) and the Press Association. Though it is presented as though it was taken secretly by a photographer keen to alert the world to an important event. In the event, it was stage managed.

Abu Qatada is now in Jordan having for eleven years fought extradition from the UK where he faces no charges. In Jordan he was wanted in connection with a “terrorist bombing conspiracy”.

The British Government has spent a lot of time and money trying to deport him. But attempts to deport him have been consistently adjudged to be in contravention of Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights. This Article relates to the prospect of a free and fair trial, something which the European Court and the UK Supreme Court both concur is not possible in Jordan for this case.

The solution is threefold. Leave the jurisdiction of the European Court in order to deport people to places where they may be tortured or ‘evidence’ arising from confessions of others under torture is admissible; change the law and agree a Mutual Assistance Treaty with said country; or both.

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