Sunday, July 29, 2018

British Justice Takes Second Place

 The Home Secretary Sajid Javid is to give precedence to the US in putting on trial two British citizens alleged to be Isis members, who belonged to the notorious “Beatles” group in Syria that specialised in torturing and beheading their captives. The British authorities are encouraging the Syrian Kurds holding El Shafee Elsheik and Alexanda Kotey to extradite them to the US rather than Britain. 

Javid’s actions is one of weakness and incapacity. First, he made the baffling and unexplained decision to drop the usual British condition that the UK would provide evidence and intelligence for a trial only if the death penalty was ruled out. Moreover, he not only abandoned the long-held British principle of opposing state executions but did so in secret, suggesting the government knew all too well the significance of its change of policy.

After 9/11 when US judicial credibility was damaged beyond repair in the eyes of the world by rendition, waterboarding, imprisonment without trial at Guantanamo and ritualised mistreatment of prisoners at Abu Ghraib.

An alternative solution would be to hand over the two accused men to the International Criminal Court in the Hague for committing war crimes but the objection to this being that the USA refuses to recognise the court.

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