First Published: 2012-11-12

 

Blow to Britain: Abu Qatada will not be deported to Jordan

 

Radical Islamist preacher wins appeal against deportation to Jordan as British judges rule there is risk of evidence obtained by torture being used against him.

 

Middle East Online

Abu Qatada was convicted in his absence in Jordan in 1998 for involvement in terror attacks

LONDON - British judges on Monday upheld an appeal by terror suspect Abu Qatada against his extradition to Jordan, ruling that there was a risk of evidence obtained by torture being used against him.

The government in London immediately condemned the decision and said it would continue its fight to deport Abu Qatada, an Islamist preacher who has been described as Osama bin Laden's right-hand man in Europe.

The 51-year-old was convicted in his absence in Jordan in 1998 for involvement in terror attacks.

British interior minister Theresa May had ordered his extradition after she was given assurances by Jordanian authorities that no evidence gained through torture would be used against him in a retrial on his return to Jordan.

But the Special Immigration Appeals Commission, a semi-secret panel of British judges that deals with decisions on national security, said it could not be guaranteed that Qatada would receive fair treatment.

"We are satisfied that the Secretary of State should have exercised her discretion differently and should not have declined to revoke the deportation order," the commission said in its ruling.

"Accordingly, this appeal is allowed."

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) had ruled earlier this year that he could not be deported while there was a "real risk that evidence obtained by torture will be used against him".

The SIAC ruling said statements from Abu Qatada's former co-defendants -- Al-Hamasher and Abu Hawsher -- which were alleged to have been obtained by torture created a risk that his trial would be unfair.

It said last month while hearing his appeal that some of the evidence against him was "extremely thin".

May was due to address parliament later Monday.

The Home Office said it would seek leave to appeal.

"The Government strongly disagrees with this ruling," a Home Office spokesman said in a statement.

"We have obtained assurances not just in relation to the treatment of Qatada himself, but about the quality of the legal processes that would be followed throughout his trial.

"Indeed, today's ruling found that 'the Jordanian judiciary, like their executive counterparts, are determined to ensure that the appellant will receive, and be seen to receive, a fair retrial.'

"We will therefore seek leave to appeal today's decision."

Abu Qatada claimed asylum in Britain in 1993.

He has spent most of the last seven years in British jails and is being held in a high-security prison while he fights deportation.

In October Britain extradited another radical Islamist preacher, Abu Hamza, and four other terror suspects to the United States at the end of a long legal battle.

 

Moroccans go to polls for local, regional elections

King Salman, President Obama gloss over differences

Washington 'monitoring' reports Russian military is in Syria

Drowned Syrian boy buried as Europe grapples with 'migrant' crisis

IS jihadists blow up tower tombs at Syria's Palmyra

UN stops aid to 229,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan

Bahrain says 5 soldiers killed in southern Saudi Arabia

2,200 Austrian drivers join campaign to pick up refugees in Budapest

More than 1,000 migrants walk their way to Austria

Hungary shuts main border crossing

22 UAE soldiers killed in Yemen

At least 30 migrants feared drowned off Libya

British PM mulls help for Syrian refugees

EU ministers to meet on escalating migrant crisis

Iran submits peace plan to Syria's Assad

Father of drowned Syrian boy tells story of fatal journey

US energy firm gets tough on stalled Israel gas deal

Iran objects to Kuwait linking it to 'terror cell'

Cameron won’t accept more refugees for now

Mideast wars cause 13 million school dropouts

Turkey arrests '4 traffickers' over migrant toddler's death

Egypt sentences dozens of alleged Islamists in mass trial

Netanyahu defiant after Obama secures Iran deal support

Family of drowned child repeatedly displaced in Syria

Erdogan lashes out at EU over Med 'migrant cemetery'

Britain to Cameron: Do more for refugees!

German asylum dream for Iraqis hard to fulfill

Iran’s Basij militia puts on show of strength in Tehran

Death toll in IS Yemen mosque attack rises to 32

UN urges Lebanon parliament to elect president

Syria, Yemen conflicts on Obama-King Salman talks

Suicide bombers hit Shiite mosque in Yemen capital: witnesses

Netanyahu threatens to shoot stone-throwers

David Petraeus: Use Al-Qaeda fighters to battle IS

White House wins enough Senate support for Iran deal

12 Syrian migrants die off Turkish coast

Car bomb kills 10 in Syria regime bastion Latakia

Saudi top cleric slams Iran prophet movie

Iran police to confiscate cars of 'poorly veiled' women

Libya's Tripoli authorities undecided on joining peace talks

Lebanon protesters escalate “You Stink” campaign

Turkey transfers British reporters to new jail

Two Yemeni Red Cross staff killed

Qatar to begin enforcing key labour reform law from November

Syria war takes its toll on heritage riches