“In the absence of any assurance by Jordan that the torture evidence would not be used against Mr Othman, the Court therefore concluded that his deportation to Jordan to be retried would give rise to a flagrant denial of justice…” Never mind “Mr. Othman’s” own flagrant attempts to deny justice to innocent people by depriving them of their lives.
“Abu Qatada wins Jordan deportation appeal,” from the BBC, January 17 (thanks to all who sent this in):
Radical cleric Abu Qatada has won his appeal against deportation from the UK to Jordan, at the European Court of Human Rights.
The judges accepted the UK’s deal with Jordan to protect the cleric from abuse was sound.
But the court said he should not face trial for terrorism on evidence obtained by the torture of others.
Home Secretary Theresa May said the European judges’ decision was “not the end of the road”.
The British government can make a final appeal before the judgement becomes binding in three months’ time. If it does not appeal, the cleric will have to be released from detention.
Abu Qatada, whose real name is Omar Othman, is one of the most influential Islamist clerics in Europe, supporting jihadist causes. British judges have described him as “truly dangerous”.
He has never faced trial in the UK, but has been detained without charge and had his movements restricted by a control order, a form of house arrest.
The Palestinian-Jordanian preacher has been convicted in his absence of involvement in two major terrorism plots in Jordan.
But he says that those convictions were based on evidence extracted by the torture of co-defendants and he would face similar treatment if returned. He originally fled to the UK in 1993 after being tortured twice.
The government signed a memorandum of understanding with Jordan as part of its efforts to expel him, one of a number of deals with foreign regimes which are designed to protect the human rights of anyone deported from the UK.
In the ruling, the Strasbourg court accepted that diplomatic assurances given by Jordan to the UK meant that the cleric would be protected from torture if he were returned.
But it added that the deportation had to be stopped because Abu Qatada was likely to face retrial in Jordan – and that torture had been used to gather the evidence against him….
Strasbourg said that it was highly probable that the “decisive” evidence against the preacher had come from abusing these defendants.
“In the absence of any assurance by Jordan that the torture evidence would not be used against Mr Othman, the Court therefore concluded that his deportation to Jordan to be retried would give rise to a flagrant denial of justice in violation of [his right to a fair trial]”….