Activists step up campaign against secret justice bill
Sunday 11 November 2012
Human rights groups will start the firing gun on their campaign against Government proposals to allow national security evidence to be heard behind closed court doors under the so-called "secret justice" bill.
Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Liberty and Reprieve will lobby against the Justice and Security Bill which is due to be debated in the House of Lords on November 19 and 21.
The reforms have been described as a "real threat" to the principles of fairness and open justice while potentially allowing the Government to "hide the truth" on national security grounds. They have raised fears that inquests into police shootings, soldiers killed by friendly fire and other hearings with the potential to cause embarrassment to authorities could be held in secret.
Amnesty International last month produced a highly-critical study on the proposals which included testimony from 25 barristers and solicitors who have acted in cases where evidence had been heard in secret.
"The Government wants a system where it can simply play the national security card whenever it wants," said Amnesty International's UK researcher Alice Wyss.
Due to take part at today's briefing at parliament on the bill are the widely-respected independent crossbench peer, Lord Pannick QC, Lord Beecham, the opposition spokesman on justice issues, Baroness Berridge the conservative peer, and Lord Strasburger, the Liberal Democrat peer.
Clare Algar, the executive director of Reprieve, said: "It is not too late for ministers to think again before taking a wrecking ball to the British tradition of fairness and equality before the law which is an example to the world."
- 1 Bill Clinton portrait features Monica Lewinsky reference, artist admits
- 2 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 3 Delhi bus rapist blames dead victim for attack because 'girls are responsible for rape'
- 4 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 5 Average penis size revealed: Scientists attempt to find what is 'normal' to reassure concerned men
Bill Clinton portrait features Monica Lewinsky reference, artist admits
Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
China's 'Inconvenient Truth': video exposing country’s smog crisis watched 100 million times
Delhi bus rapist blames dead victim for attack because 'girls are responsible for rape'
The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Have you got a proven track rec...
£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...
£38000 - £48000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This B2B content marketing agen...
£50000 - £60000 per annum + Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: An outstanding new...