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M71 - Extradite Abu Qatada Motion

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    I support this motion. I believe that our courts should not be overruled by what is essentially a foreign court.

    I think that is something to bear in mind whilst debating this motion; it's less about the individual case and more about the situation that unfolds from this overall. If we accept now that a European court has the right to overrule our courts then surely we accept the notion that our laws mean nothing and we move closer to a world where accountability leaves Britain and enters Europe indefinitely? Now sure, the British courts aren't exactly accountable to the British people in a direct sense, but in a way, I think they act as the "arms" of Parliament. We are elected, we set the laws and then the courts apply them to the people everyday. In that sense they are accountable to the British people and follows the customs of our people as one would expect. But one can't say the same for the ECHR.

    In the interests of the British people, it is important that we fight for the right for our courts to make the decisions on British criminal cases; even if that means passing the buck and letting the Jordanians settle the matter.
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    Gentleman of the House (I'd say ladies, but we seem to be severely lacking in that department. Looks like the new Minister of Equality has some work on his hands!), this motion goes far beyond the simple immediate repercussions of whether or not we deport Qatada. This motion, at the core, is an argument about whether the state has the right to work outside the legal framework that has been created. If you value liberty and the protection of rights, in any way, then I beg you to oppose this motion. I'll now break down the Government's arguments to show you why.

    The first and most basic argument is that he is a Jordanian citizen, and must therefore face the Jordanian justice system. The Government has proposed that he is escaping the law that Opposition seeks to enforce if we prevent him being detained. This is patently not the case, however. If we could fully trust the Jordanian authorities in every way that Qatada would undergo the punishment the courts decide, and nothing more, then I would agree with the Government. However, we can not. There are multiple grounds to believe Qatada would be tortured if he were turned over to the Jordanian authorities. The ECHR is not the only authority to note this, our own Supreme Court did so in 2009. There are two responses offered by the Government to this. The first is that the Jordanian authorities have promised to treat him with respect, and that the Opposition owes a burden of proof to show that Qatada will not be treated safely. This argument patently does not hold. Consider: if the Jordanian authorities do not torture, then Qatada will receive what the law would give him. If they do torture, he shall receive far more. The cost of the Jordanian's promise being falsely made is far, far greater than the cost of the Jordanian's promise being truthfully made. A false positive is far more dangerous than a false negative, and as such, the burden of proof lies firmly with the Government - this is a burden of proof they have not provided. The second response is that this is patronizing - there are allegations that the US has engaged in torture, yet we still extradite to them. Why is Qatada different? Birchington has already provided a more than adequate answer to this: he is not. The Opposition is perfectly consistent - British citizens like Gary McKinnon, Chris Tappin and Richard O'Dwyer should not have been extradited.

    The next argument offered by the Government is that Qatada is a criminal, and therefore forfeits his right to asylum. This argument is patently incorrect so far as the UK is concerned, as Qatada has not committed a crime as recognised by the United Kingdom's Courts. This was later amended by the Government, in a clear sign of their inconsistency, to "Qatada is dangerous, and therefore waives his right to asylum". This shows a clear disregard for the rule of law. We do not punish people before a crime has been committed or intent to commit a crime has been clearly displayed. If the state thinks he may be dangerous, then we take precautions. What we do not take is the law into our own hands, and declare ourselves judge, jury and executioner. The final and most worrying Government response as far as this argument was concerned was "you wouldn't feel comfortable with Qatada in your community - you would be scared, you would want him gone". I freely admit - I would be scared. I would want him gone. I wouldn't want him in my community. But, gentlemen, we must be better than that. As individuals, we may be scared, but as a society, we must be strong. We have to rise above the fear, and follow the laws that we have created for ourselves, for without them, we are no society at all. To play to the fears of the individuals in the mass is the worst kind of populist demagoguery.

    The final argument, and the weakest argument, that we heard from the Government was about cost - Qatada costs money to keep. In Opposition, we are fully aware of that cost. However, we are aware of that cost for what it really is. Beyond paying for his security and imprisonment, that money is ensuring that our laws and rights are respected. That money ensures that the say of the courts is final, and that we uphold the laws and rights of all men, even when government would seek to overturn them. The Opposition sees that as a cost well spent. I feel the Labour Party is not alone on this. They can correct me if I am wrong, but I do believe the Libertarians see the Rule of Law as one of two central tenets of state existence, alongside defence. I do believe this is the one aspect of government spending even they would defend. I'd also like to say how glad I am to have the backing of CyclopsRock and D.R.E on this matter - this is not some petty party issue, but a cross-party matter of liberty.

    Niemoller's words are as important as they always were.

    First they came for the Communists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Communist
    Then they came for the Socialists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Socialist
    Then they came for the Jews
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Jew
    Then they came for me
    And there was no one left
    To speak out for me


    Gentlemen, if you want anyone to speak out for you, please, vote against this motion.
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    I couldn't agree more TopHat's brilliant comments below. I urge everyone to oppose this motion.
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    (Original post by TopHat)
    Gentleman of the House (I'd say ladies, but we seem to be severely lacking in that department. Looks like the new Minister of Equality has some work on his hands!), this motion goes far beyond the simple immediate repercussions of whether or not we deport Qatada. This motion, at the core, is an argument about whether the state has the right to work outside the legal framework that has been created. If you value liberty and the protection of rights, in any way, then I beg you to oppose this motion. I'll now break down the Government's arguments to show you why.

    The first and most basic argument is that he is a Jordanian citizen, and must therefore face the Jordanian justice system. The Government has proposed that he is escaping the law that Opposition seeks to enforce if we prevent him being detained. This is patently not the case, however. If we could fully trust the Jordanian authorities in every way that Qatada would undergo the punishment the courts decide, and nothing more, then I would agree with the Government. However, we can not. There are multiple grounds to believe Qatada would be tortured if he were turned over to the Jordanian authorities. The ECHR is not the only authority to note this, our own Supreme Court did so in 2009. There are two responses offered by the Government to this. The first is that the Jordanian authorities have promised to treat him with respect, and that the Opposition owes a burden of proof to show that Qatada will not be treated safely. This argument patently does not hold. Consider: if the Jordanian authorities do not torture, then Qatada will receive what the law would give him. If they do torture, he shall receive far more. The cost of the Jordanian's promise being falsely made is far, far greater than the cost of the Jordanian's promise being truthfully made. A false positive is far more dangerous than a false negative, and as such, the burden of proof lies firmly with the Government - this is a burden of proof they have not provided. The second response is that this is patronizing - there are allegations that the US has engaged in torture, yet we still extradite to them. Why is Qatada different? Birchington has already provided a more than adequate answer to this: he is not. The Opposition is perfectly consistent - British citizens like Gary McKinnon, Chris Tappin and Richard O'Dwyer should not have been extradited.

    The next argument offered by the Government is that Qatada is a criminal, and therefore forfeits his right to asylum. This argument is patently incorrect so far as the UK is concerned, as Qatada has not committed a crime as recognised by the United Kingdom's Courts. This was later amended by the Government, in a clear sign of their inconsistency, to "Qatada is dangerous, and therefore waives his right to asylum". This shows a clear disregard for the rule of law. We do not punish people before a crime has been committed or intent to commit a crime has been clearly displayed. If the state thinks he may be dangerous, then we take precautions. What we do not take is the law into our own hands, and declare ourselves judge, jury and executioner. The final and most worrying Government response as far as this argument was concerned was "you wouldn't feel comfortable with Qatada in your community - you would be scared, you would want him gone". I freely admit - I would be scared. I would want him gone. I wouldn't want him in my community. But, gentlemen, we must be better than that. As individuals, we may be scared, but as a society, we must be strong. We have to rise above the fear, and follow the laws that we have created for ourselves, for without them, we are no society at all. To play to the fears of the individuals in the mass is the worst kind of populist demagoguery.

    The final argument, and the weakest argument, that we heard from the Government was about cost - Qatada costs money to keep. In Opposition, we are fully aware of that cost. However, we are aware of that cost for what it really is. Beyond paying for his security and imprisonment, that money is ensuring that our laws and rights are respected. That money ensures that the say of the courts is final, and that we uphold the laws and rights of all men, even when government would seek to overturn them. The Opposition sees that as a cost well spent. I feel the Labour Party is not alone on this. They can correct me if I am wrong, but I do believe the Libertarians see the Rule of Law as one of two central tenets of state existence, alongside defence. I do believe this is the one aspect of government spending even they would defend. I'd also like to say how glad I am to have the backing of CyclopsRock and D.R.E on this matter - this is not some petty party issue, but a cross-party matter of liberty.

    Niemoller's words are as important as they always were.

    First they came for the Communists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Communist
    Then they came for the Socialists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Socialist
    Then they came for the Jews
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Jew
    Then they came for me
    And there was no one left
    To speak out for me


    Gentlemen, if you want anyone to speak out for you, please, vote against this motion.
    Type all you want, the simple fact is that the highest court in this land ruled that he could be deported. It should be our decision, and not that of Eurocrats.
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    (Original post by the man from space)
    I also ask we send Clegg to Jordan to receive torture on behalf of Abu Qatada as Clegg does noting and he is a cost to the tax payer
    :lol:


    He should be deported unless the governments refuse to promise not to torture him.
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    I really want to vote aye because as far as I am concerned Mr Qatada is a deplorable man who should stand trial for his crimes.


    Having said that, the UK is a member of the ECHR, therefore we must accept their rules.


    I am leaning towards abstaining.
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    (Original post by Mr Dangermouse)
    I really want to vote aye because as far as I am concerned Mr Qatada is a deplorable man who should stand trial for his crimes.


    Having said that, the UK is a member of the ECHR, therefore we must accept their rules.


    I am leaning towards abstaining.
    Do the right thing, and support the UK's right to deport those who would see it burn.
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    We can't expect to uphold liberty if we are letting a foreign unaccountable court overrule the decisions of our own courts. Because remember, our courts enact the laws set out by Parliament, so, allowing a European court overrule a British court is in effect the same as allowing a European court overrule the sovereignty of Parliament.

    That is; allowing unelected Europeans overrule the democratically elected representatives that the people of this country chose to represent them.

    How can we ever uphold liberty if democracy is being trampled all over? Democracy is a prerequisite of liberty; it is the most essential ingredient of freedom. That's why, as a libertarian (with a small L of course), I will be voting aye.
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    (Original post by Jarred)
    We can't expect to uphold liberty if we are letting a foreign unaccountable court overrule the decisions of our own courts. Because remember, our courts enact the laws set out by Parliament, so, allowing a European court overrule a British court is in effect the same as allowing a European court overrule the sovereignty of Parliament.

    That is; allowing unelected Europeans overrule the democratically elected representatives that the people of this country chose to represent them.

    How can we ever uphold liberty if democracy is being trampled all over? Democracy is a prerequisite of liberty; it is the most essential ingredient of freedom. That's why, as a libertarian (with a small L of course), I will be voting aye.
    I couldn't agree more. It's funny how the leftists so unashamedly say that there should be limits on principles such as freedom of speech when it comes to a drunk student posting some daft tweets; but then advocate the complete and unalienable sovereignty of rule of law when it comes to trying to protect a known terrorist. :rolleyes:
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    (Original post by TopHat)
    Gentleman of the House (I'd say ladies, but we seem to be severely lacking in that department. Looks like the new Minister of Equality has some work on his hands!), this motion goes far beyond the simple immediate repercussions of whether or not we deport Qatada. This motion, at the core, is an argument about whether the state has the right to work outside the legal framework that has been created. If you value liberty and the protection of rights, in any way, then I beg you to oppose this motion. I'll now break down the Government's arguments to show you why.
    (The Secretary of State for Equality is looking into dressing certain Cabinet members in drag as a temporary solution to the Rt. Hon. Gentleman's identified problem.) This motion is much more than that in the sense that it is implicitly calling for a change in the legal framework. As the Chancellor said, this is a matter of British sovereignty more than anything else. Should the UK government be able to execute the best interests of the British people free from extraneous interference by unaccountable foreign bodies? I think it should. The British law enforcement system has clearly found Qatada to be someone that does more harm than anything else staying in the UK - he is an active threat to the harmony that the government has to preserve. This is clear from his CV, from his sermons, and from his sinister beard.

    The first and most basic argument is that he is a Jordanian citizen, and must therefore face the Jordanian justice system. The Government has proposed that he is escaping the law that Opposition seeks to enforce if we prevent him being detained. This is patently not the case, however. If we could fully trust the Jordanian authorities in every way that Qatada would undergo the punishment the courts decide, and nothing more, then I would agree with the Government. However, we can not. There are multiple grounds to believe Qatada would be tortured if he were turned over to the Jordanian authorities. The ECHR is not the only authority to note this, our own Supreme Court did so in 2009. There are two responses offered by the Government to this. The first is that the Jordanian authorities have promised to treat him with respect, and that the Opposition owes a burden of proof to show that Qatada will not be treated safely. This argument patently does not hold. Consider: if the Jordanian authorities do not torture, then Qatada will receive what the law would give him. If they do torture, he shall receive far more. The cost of the Jordanian's promise being falsely made is far, far greater than the cost of the Jordanian's promise being truthfully made. A false positive is far more dangerous than a false negative, and as such, the burden of proof lies firmly with the Government - this is a burden of proof they have not provided. The second response is that this is patronizing - there are allegations that the US has engaged in torture, yet we still extradite to them. Why is Qatada different? Birchington has already provided a more than adequate answer to this: he is not. The Opposition is perfectly consistent - British citizens like Gary McKinnon, Chris Tappin and Richard O'Dwyer should not have been extradited.
    Okay, so before extradition you need to trust the Jordanian courts to carry out a punishment that fits your expectation of what the punishment should be? We have to respect the right of Jordan to govern it's people in whatever way it sees fit. It is not a tyrannical rogue state, it is a nation on the cusp of development and human rights. We can encourage this progression by trusting the pledge they have already provided, not by stonewalling their independent judicial system. McKinnon, O'Dwyer, Tappin etc. are civilised men who we all agree have done no wrong, they are not radical Islamist extremists. This is the difference. Pretending that this distinction does not exist is a reason why the UK is fast becoming an international haven for terrorist training. Do you think that the men you cite would sympathise with Qatada? I don't.

    The next argument offered by the Government is that Qatada is a criminal, and therefore forfeits his right to asylum. This argument is patently incorrect so far as the UK is concerned, as Qatada has not committed a crime as recognised by the United Kingdom's Courts. This was later amended by the Government, in a clear sign of their inconsistency, to "Qatada is dangerous, and therefore waives his right to asylum". This shows a clear disregard for the rule of law. We do not punish people before a crime has been committed or intent to commit a crime has been clearly displayed. If the state thinks he may be dangerous, then we take precautions. What we do not take is the law into our own hands, and declare ourselves judge, jury and executioner. The final and most worrying Government response as far as this argument was concerned was "you wouldn't feel comfortable with Qatada in your community - you would be scared, you would want him gone". I freely admit - I would be scared. I would want him gone. I wouldn't want him in my community. But, gentlemen, we must be better than that. As individuals, we may be scared, but as a society, we must be strong. We have to rise above the fear, and follow the laws that we have created for ourselves, for without them, we are no society at all. To play to the fears of the individuals in the mass is the worst kind of populist demagoguery.
    Why must we be better than to treat our country as if it belongs to us? And accusing the government of scaremongering is a bit rich considering that you've cited Niemoller in this post. Honestly. And as for the part in bold, we should not treat extradition to Jordan as a punishment in itself (which is clearly what you're doing here), as that line of reasoning is a fallacy. You're saying that facing the Jordanian legal system is a punishment - does that mean that all people living under every legal system with a history of torture are undergoing some form of automatic penalty? I think you'll find that that is most of the World's population, China and India accounted for - let alone US citizens.

    And your interesting little allusion to the Third Reich raises some dreadful questions about what's happening in France! They recently extradited some radical Islamists. Would the Rt. Hon. Member care to inform us how far down the road to authoritarianism France is?
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    So, we've seen the Government develop two new and equally scary propositions. The first is dressing the Cabinet in drag. I hope I have the backing of all the House when I say that while I respect many things about Rakas21, his ability to fashion a dress is not one of them. The second is that somehow by supporting this bill, we are reasserting our sovereignty over the ECHR. This second is factually untrue. Firstly, because TSR MHoC already has sovereignty over the ECHR, and always has. Secondly, and more importantly, because if you want to reassert our sovereignty over the ECHR, you should design a bill or motion designed specifically to do just that! You should not under any circumstances play political games with somebody who, however much we may detest him on a personal level, is accorded by law certain rights. That is making a toy of the legal system, and it is not acceptable.

    Then again, I think the Government is more than aware that their argument is falling apart. Firstly, they insinuate the Opposition has a problem with the Jordanian legal system itself. We have no such problem - it is the Jordanian extra-legal system we worry about. They the insinuated by my words I was trying to scaremonger! This is blatantly untrue - I was merely pointing out the logic and truth of Niemoller's words hold true in many situations. It's more than a little ironic they try to do this in light of the Right. Hon. Paymaster General's words!

    The only valid point the Government were capable of raising in response to the criticism delivered earlier was that by not delivering Qatada to the Jordanians, we are effectively stonewalling the Jordanian courts. However, we feel that stonewalling the Jordanian justice system, at least for the time being, is a necessary act. Jordan's judicial system is classed in the second worst tier available of the 7 tiers provided by Freedom House, the independent international organisation dedicated to monitoring civil liberties and political rights around the world. To claim they have an "independent judicial system" displays a lack of understanding.
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    (Original post by TopHat)
    So, we've seen the Government develop two new and equally scary propositions. The first is dressing the Cabinet in drag. I hope I have the backing of all the House when I say that while I respect many things about Rakas21, his ability to fashion a dress is not one of them. The second is that somehow by supporting this bill, we are reasserting our sovereignty over the ECHR. This second is factually untrue. Firstly, because TSR MHoC already has sovereignty over the ECHR, and always has. Secondly, and more importantly, because if you want to reassert our sovereignty over the ECHR, you should design a bill or motion designed specifically to do just that! You should not under any circumstances play political games with somebody who, however much we may detest him on a personal level, is accorded by law certain rights. That is making a toy of the legal system, and it is not acceptable.

    Then again, I think the Government is more than aware that their argument is falling apart. Firstly, they insinuate the Opposition has a problem with the Jordanian legal system itself. We have no such problem - it is the Jordanian extra-legal system we worry about. They the insinuated by my words I was trying to scaremonger! This is blatantly untrue - I was merely pointing out the logic and truth of Niemoller's words hold true in many situations. It's more than a little ironic they try to do this in light of the Right. Hon. Paymaster General's words!

    The only valid point the Government were capable of raising in response to the criticism delivered earlier was that by not delivering Qatada to the Jordanians, we are effectively stonewalling the Jordanian courts. However, we feel that stonewalling the Jordanian justice system, at least for the time being, is a necessary act. Jordan's judicial system is classed in the second worst tier available of the 7 tiers provided by Freedom House, the independent international organisation dedicated to monitoring civil liberties and political rights around the world. To claim they have an "independent judicial system" displays a lack of understanding.
    I would agree with your point about deporting Qatada making a toy out of our legal system if it weren't so blatantly obvious that he deserves deportation, and that it's only European bureaucracy that's getting in the way. Deporting him is the right thing to do, as it's what we'd do were we not subject to Eurocracy, and essentially amounts to little more than civil discourse on a international governmental scale. Were it a case of deporting him for the sole purpose of proving a point to the ECHR, I would agree with you. But aside from proving a point to the ECHR, it seems fairly obvious to everyone that the man deserves deportation, and would be deported were it not for the ECHR.
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    (Original post by TopHat)
    So, we've seen the Government develop two new and equally scary propositions. The first is dressing the Cabinet in drag. I hope I have the backing of all the House when I say that while I respect many things about Rakas21, his ability to fashion a dress is not one of them. The second is that somehow by supporting this bill, we are reasserting our sovereignty over the ECHR. This second is factually untrue. Firstly, because TSR MHoC already has sovereignty over the ECHR, and always has. Secondly, and more importantly, because if you want to reassert our sovereignty over the ECHR, you should design a bill or motion designed specifically to do just that! You should not under any circumstances play political games with somebody who, however much we may detest him on a personal level, is accorded by law certain rights. That is making a toy of the legal system, and it is not acceptable.

    Then again, I think the Government is more than aware that their argument is falling apart. Firstly, they insinuate the Opposition has a problem with the Jordanian legal system itself. We have no such problem - it is the Jordanian extra-legal system we worry about. They the insinuated by my words I was trying to scaremonger! This is blatantly untrue - I was merely pointing out the logic and truth of Niemoller's words hold true in many situations. It's more than a little ironic they try to do this in light of the Right. Hon. Paymaster General's words!

    The only valid point the Government were capable of raising in response to the criticism delivered earlier was that by not delivering Qatada to the Jordanians, we are effectively stonewalling the Jordanian courts. However, we feel that stonewalling the Jordanian justice system, at least for the time being, is a necessary act. Jordan's judicial system is classed in the second worst tier available of the 7 tiers provided by Freedom House, the independent international organisation dedicated to monitoring civil liberties and political rights around the world. To claim they have an "independent judicial system" displays a lack of understanding.
    I'd like to start by thanking the Honourable Gentleman for his comments throughout this debate and providing some healthy opposition. As an elected Member of Parliament, it is my duty to represent my constituent's interests, which is why I will continue to push for Abu Qatada to be deported in my position as Home Secretary.

    The issue of cost has been raised, and whilst I accept that this is a secondary issue, it is still an issue that needs to be discussed. The costs to monitor and supervise Qatada under his current bail conditions are phenomenal; how many police officers, MI5 agents and other security personnel are needed for this operation? These are all people who could be out on the streets solving murders and investigating other crimes; instead they are all focussed on one man.

    The second and most important issue is public safety. As Government, we have a responsibility to look after our citizens. This Government believes that Abu Qatada is a dangerous man and poses a serious threat to our society. The Honourable Gentleman suggests that we should simply live in this fear; I disagree. I would not wish to live next to this man and I would therefore impose no such punishment on anyone else.

    I believe that the ruling made by the European Court of Human Rights was wrong. This democratically elected Government believes that we are right in saying that Qatada is a threat and needs to go. In my belief, we get the last say and I am currently holding discussions with various organisations to see where the Government stands on this issue and whether the possibility of simply ignoring the ECHR decision is open.

    Since residing in the UK, he has provided advice to others which gave religious legitimacy to those who wish to further the aims of Islamic extremism. He also faces a number of charges in Jordan, where there is a substantial amount of evidence against his name.

    Therefore, as Home Secretary, I refuse to harbour criminals in the UK and allow them to pose as a threat to British citizens. I will do everything within my powers to deport him to Jordan so that he can stand trial for the charges faced against him. You raise the point about the possibility of him being tortured there? I could not care less if he is tortured there.

    The best place for a terrorist is in a prison cell, or even better, dead. The best place for a foreign terrorist is in a foreign prison cell, far away from the UK
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    no, the ECHR has said it's not safe for him to be returned there and I do not support torture either as a form of potential punishment or as means of extracting information for a trial that has no guarantee of being fair. the suggestion we should ignore peoples human rights purely because we do not like them is an attitude worthy only of the most vile regimes, it is certainly not one that should be espoused by this house.
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    No, this is a terrible motion. Party I think it's because of the Government's scepticism over Europe, and want to see us overruling an ECHR ruling in some sort of show of strength against a united Europe. I don't think we should seek to alienate ourselves from Europe, be that the ECHR or the EU, and I think we should seek closer integration with Europe, something this motion would prevent.

    There's a more important point that this though: it has been found that his human rights could be compromised should he be deported. Of course when you commit a crime you forego some of your human rights, but only those which are necessary to protect others. We're not talking about his right to freedom here, we're talking about his fundamental human right not to be subject to torture. Human rights are there to protect everyone, you can't just say that because you don't like him he doesn't deserve them, they don't all disappear as soon as someone commits a crime. Their very purpose is to protect everyone in every situation, criminals are the most important people they protect, because they're the ones who are most likely to have them breached, through torture of any other method.

    I don't get how people can pretty much say "**** him". Yes, he's a vile person, but that's exactly what he is, a person, still deserving of basic rights. We can't be implicit in his torture (which we very much would be if we deport him, having been told of that risk), and I don't see how anyone can think deporting him is the right thing to do, having looked at the potential risk of him being tortured. Yes, he's a vile man, but he isn't deserving of torture.

    I'll vehemently oppose such a motion and hope other in the house agree.
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    (Original post by SciFiBoy)
    no, the ECHR has said it's not safe for him to be returned there and I do not support torture either as a form of potential punishment or as means of extracting information for a trial that has no guarantee of being fair. the suggestion we should ignore peoples human rights purely because we do not like them is an attitude worthy only of the most vile regimes, it is certainly not one that should be espoused by this house.
    The issue is not that his rights would be ignored: the issue is of sovereignty. The UK does not deport people if they think there is a risk of torture; the highest court in Britain has ruled that he would not be at risk of torture.
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    (Original post by DebatingGreg)
    Alas, my stance, too, mirrors TopHat's, Birchington's and Morgsie. We are clearly not sure whether torture will be used in order to gain evidence, so I see it only right not to say Nay.
    My view is also with TopHat, Morgsie & Birchington. I say Nay to this motion.
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    (Original post by tufc)
    The issue is not that his rights would be ignored: the issue is of sovereignty. The UK does not deport people if they think there is a risk of torture; the highest court in Britain has ruled that he would not be at risk of torture.
    the ECHR and others have said he would be at risk of torture and it is suspected that the "evidence" against him was in part also gained by torture...
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    (Original post by SciFiBoy)
    the ECHR and others have said he would be at risk of torture and it is suspected that the "evidence" against him was in part also gained by torture...
    The ECHR have abused their powers by interfering in British domestic affairs. This Government believes that this man is a threat to our society; if you would not be happy to live in the same street as this man, then why should we punish others by allowing this man to live in their communities? At the end of the day, the Government has a duty to protect the interests of its civilians, and if that means ignoring a decision made by the ECHR and deporting Abu Qatada to Jordan, then so be it.
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    (Original post by TopHat)
    So, we've seen the Government develop two new and equally scary propositions. The first is dressing the Cabinet in drag. I hope I have the backing of all the House when I say that while I respect many things about Rakas21, his ability to fashion a dress is not one of them. The second is that somehow by supporting this bill, we are reasserting our sovereignty over the ECHR. This second is factually untrue. Firstly, because TSR MHoC already has sovereignty over the ECHR, and always has. Secondly, and more importantly, because if you want to reassert our sovereignty over the ECHR, you should design a bill or motion designed specifically to do just that! You should not under any circumstances play political games with somebody who, however much we may detest him on a personal level, is accorded by law certain rights. That is making a toy of the legal system, and it is not acceptable.
    That's a pretty straw man you've got there. The Government's position is and always will be that it is in our power to extradite Qatada, and it is in the public's interests to extradite Qatada. This Motion is just an affirmation of that. As I've already stated, France - as an example - already follow the protocol of immediate extradition to countries like Jordan, in spite of being signatories to the ECHR. Qatada is a tyrant who would see our hard-won rights taken away with bombs and terror, he has no place in the UK. Had he wanted to stay he should not have been such a big ol' threat to national security.

    Then again, I think the Government is more than aware that their argument is falling apart. Firstly, they insinuate the Opposition has a problem with the Jordanian legal system itself. We have no such problem - it is the Jordanian extra-legal system we worry about. They the insinuated by my words I was trying to scaremonger! This is blatantly untrue - I was merely pointing out the logic and truth of Niemoller's words hold true in many situations. It's more than a little ironic they try to do this in light of the Right. Hon. Paymaster General's words!
    First they came for the known terrorist leaders,
    And I did not speak out for I was not a known terrorist leader.
    Then they came for me,
    And there was no one left to speak out for me.


    Is this not the point you were trying to make by quoting Niemoller?

    The only valid point the Government were capable of raising in response to the criticism delivered earlier was that by not delivering Qatada to the Jordanians, we are effectively stonewalling the Jordanian courts. However, we feel that stonewalling the Jordanian justice system, at least for the time being, is a necessary act. Jordan's judicial system is classed in the second worst tier available of the 7 tiers provided by Freedom House, the independent international organisation dedicated to monitoring civil liberties and political rights around the world. To claim they have an "independent judicial system" displays a lack of understanding.
    Imagine the precedent we are setting. Of course the Jordanian judicial system needs improvement, but is that brought about by undermining it like we are currently doing? What you're saying is that Qatada should not face Jordan's courts because there is some prospect of extra-legal punishment (their law enforcement is known for it etc. etc.). Where does this leave the ordinary people of Jordan and other countries with similar reputations? Should we let them all seek asylum in the UK if they don't want to face their nation's courts?
Updated: April 21, 2012
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