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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Will Theresa be caught by the securocrats?

Will Theresa be caught by the securocrats?

Deportation is no substitute for a fair trial. The coalition must stop this un-British practice

It’s not easy being a coalition government that has bound itself together with the language of fundamental rights and freedoms.

Inevitably, the tests of unity and resolve come early and often. The first one came yesterday in the form of a decision by the Special Immigration Appeals Commission that two Pakistani students believed to be involved in an al-Qaeda plot cannot be returned to their homeland for fear they might be tortured. Abid Naseer and Ahmed Faraz Khan, along with eight other men, were arrested last year — but never charged — after a large counter-terrorism swoop.

Some pundits and politicians will no doubt renew their cries to rip up the Human Rights Act and withdraw from the European Convention that was Churchill’s postwar legacy. Interesting man, Churchill — not least for standing up to tyranny and having been a Liberal and Conservative MP.

The potential tension is that the Liberal Democrats have been among the proudest defenders of the Human Rights Act, while some Conservatives instinctively prefer “English liberties” — freedom that attaches to nationality rather than humanity.

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