By Tim Montgomerie
Control Orders were introduced by the last government to impose various restrictions on people who are suspected of terrorist connections. One of the reasons why the individuals cannot be deported, which is the usual remedy for such individuals, is the fear that they may be tortured in their countries of origin.
A new report from the Centre for Social Cohesion, written by Robin Simcox, lists some of the people who have been subject to COs:
- Faraj Hassan al-Saadi, convicted in Italy for membership of a terrorist group and described as the ‘European envoy’ of Musab al-Zarqawi, the former head of al- Qaeda in Iraq;
- Abu Qatada, the al-Qaeda ideologue convicted in absentia in Jordan of terrorist offences;
- A suspected member of the Tunisian Fighting Group, convicted in absentia in Tunisia of terrorist offences;
- A senior member of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), a proscribed terrorist group, convicted in absentia in Morocco of terrorist offences relating to the May 2003 bombings in Casablanca; and
- An Ethiopian suspected of undertaking terrorist training in Somalia, who was also associated with the 21/7 suicide bomb plotters.
A PDF of his full report is here.
In today's Times (£) Rachel Sylvester identifies the issue as a source of tension between the Coalition partners:
"The spooks and the cops are unwilling to see detention without trial brought down to 14 days. They are opposed to the idea that control orders should be scrapped. David Cameron — a more paternalist Tory than civil libertarians such as David Davis — may be unwilling to overrule his security experts, who are warning that to take a more liberal approach could make a terrorist attack in Britain more likely. But if he insists on retaining Labour’s controversial measures that would put him on a direct collision course with Nick Clegg on an issue of symbolic importance for the coalition. “These are big battles,” says one insider."