Monitor: All the News of the World - Verdicts on Jack Straw's decision to allow the Pinochet extradition process to continue

DIFFICULT TO find a more appropriate commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights than the British Home Secretary's decision to allow his country's courts to process Spain's request for the extradition of Pinochet. The Pinochet case has not only aroused international passions and unleashed controversy, but taken on a direction and speed that few would have dared predict. London and Madrid have overcome powerful pressures upon them to shelve any action on this delicate matter... The Pinochet affair is doing more for international law than decades of conventions ignored by signatory governments.

El Pais, Spain

THE BRITISH Labour Government has, in an act of political indifference to the basic legal principles stated by our Foreign Ministry, sought to ignore the fact that Chile is a sovereign and independent country. However, the minister can at any moment take political factors into account and decree the end of the extradition process and end the gravest situation that Chilean juridical sovereignty has had to face this century.

El Mercurio, Chile

THE MINISTER is one of the hardest men of the current Labour Government. He is silent and effective, soft on the outside and hard inside, although the Pinochet case could still become his Achilles' heel. He firmly believes in socialism as a moral framework and a way of life, and undoubtedly his deepest political convictions are being put to the test.

El Periodico de Catalunya, Spain

PINOCHET CAN no longer expect the British Government to be magnanimous. Straw and his government have shown political courage in taking a decision that means that Pinochet will not be able to leave Britain for a long time. However much the Chilean government and Pinochet's supporters protest, neither Blair nor anyone can do anything for the General. He must be cursing the day when he took the plane for the London clinic and tea with Thatcher.

El Mundo, Spain

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