14 July 2003

British justice and Guant�namo

From the Guardian
The home secretary, David Blunkett, and the constitutional affairs secretary, Lord Falconer, believe that if the two alleged terrorists were returned to Britain, they may well not be sent to trial due to the way in which any evidence has been extracted from them. The decision would rest with the crown prosecution service.

Mr Blunkett leans towards trial in the US civil courts, rather than repatriation, but such a trial risks ending with the death penalty, leaving ministers without an easy option.

This is cloud cuckoo land. The US has abandoned its own human rights tradition in order to justify its conduct at Guant�namo Bay. If the Australian and UK detainees cannot be tried in their own countries that does not justify drumhead courts which, like so much of the Bush administration, give the appearance, but not the reality, of justice.

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