Brows­ing on­line ex­trem­ism ‘may put you in jail’

The Daily Telegraph - - News - By Kate Mccann se­nior po­lit­i­cal Cor­re­spon­dent

NEW ter­ror laws risk crim­i­nal­is­ing peo­ple who look at ex­trem­ist ma­te­rial on­line out of “cu­rios­ity”, a com­mit­tee of MPS has warned.

The joint com­mit­tee on hu­man rights, made up of five Tory and four Labour MPS, said new mea­sures to tackle ter­ror­ism “cross the line” on hu­man rights and should be amended or scrapped al­to­gether. Home

‘De­spite pre­vi­ous warn­ings, this Bill still crosses the line on hu­man rights’

Of­fice min­is­ters claim the pow­ers, which in­clude the right to ar­rest any­one re­turn­ing to the UK from a des­ig­nated coun­try such as Syria, will help the UK to guard against at­tacks and ex­trem­ism.

But the com­mit­tee warned that some of the new mea­sures mean peo­ple would not be free to look at ma­te­rial on the in­ter­net or ex­press sup­port for pro­scribed or­gan­i­sa­tions with­out the threat of pri­son.

Har­riet Har­man, the Labour chair­man of the com­mit­tee, said: “De­spite our pre­vi­ous warn­ings, this Bill still crosses the line on hu­man rights. We’ve put for­ward a range of amend­ments de­signed to bring it in line with hu­man rights, tak­ing into ac­count the wide-rang­ing ev­i­dence we took.

“The Gov­ern­ment has failed to give us ad­e­quate jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for pro­vi­sions which risk un­der­min­ing free speech and giv­ing them wide and un­ac­count­able pow­ers. I trust the Lords will make sure the Gov­ern­ment will now ad­dress our ar­gu­ments prop­erly.”

But Ben Wal­lace, the se­cu­rity min­is­ter, warned the new pow­ers are es­sen­tial to pro­tect the UK from threats and en­sure peo­ple do not en­gage in ex­trem­ism. He said: “It is our view that the mea­sures in the Counter-ter­ror­ism and Bor­der Se­cu­rity Bill are nec­es­sary, pro­por­tion­ate and com­pat­i­ble with the Euro­pean Con­ven­tion on Hu­man Rights, and so I am dis­ap­pointed with the com­mit­tee’s con­clu­sions.

“Af­ter the spate of ter­ror­ist at­tacks of last year and the deadly nerve agent at­tack in Sal­is­bury, our in­tel­li­gence ser­vices and po­lice made the case for an up­date of ex­ist­ing leg­is­la­tion and some new pow­ers to help meet their op­er­a­tional needs and re­spond to the evolv­ing threats posed by ter­ror­ism and hos­tile state ac­tiv­ity.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.