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UK Snoopers’ Charter: Big Brother and Human Rights Ruling

29 Sep

Theresa May.jpeg

[Source: Google Images]

 

In November 2016, Britain’s Parliament passed legislation to expand state surveillance of private individuals.

Dubbed the “snoopers’ charter” by civil liberties and Human Rights organisations, the law was intended to require telecommunications companies to keep records of all customers’ emails and web activity for a year, and gives public authorities and officials wide-ranging access to such information.

In effect, this law – had it been left unchallenged and successful, in its enactment – would have also allowed any public official or authority to access any individual’s personal data, whether in the privacy of his/ her home, such as internet browsing history; or mobile phone data; and even medical records and financial transactions.

The law would also allow for computer hacking and of mobile phones.

(The Met police have already admitted to indiscriminately collecting private data, by covert means, under the Regulatory Powers Bill (RIPA)).

 

Her Majesty’s government has stated that the law will help its authorities in the fight against terrorism and crime.

By this statement, one can assume that the law would target members of Britain’s Muslim communities in particular, as with the Government’s PREVENT strategy, which has previously targeted children as young as five.

However, on Wednesday, the 12 December 2016, the European Court of Justice ruled that governments must not (be permitted to) indiscriminately collect and retain people’s emails and electronic communications.

Presumably, this is because instruments like this, are intended to drive through all citizens’ Universal Human Rights laws, including the right to privacy and data protection rights.

The UK government is said to be disappointed — of course, it would be!

Via the Home Office, it has also stated that the Government intends to appeal the ruling.

Some years ago, the UK Government announced plans to repeal and water down the Human Rights Act, and replace it with a British Bill of Rights.

This is entirely a Tory plan, led by Charlie Elphicke, that does not have the full support of any of the other major political parties in the UK.

In Elphicke’s version of a British (nee Tory) Bill of Rights, the law would allow the Government to avoid its Human Rights obligations; to respect the rights and freedoms of man and woman, effectively placing it (the Government) above the law.

It would also allow the Government to tell the judiciary how to apply this proposed law. Alan Richards explains it in some considerable well researched detail here:

https://thinkinglegally.wordpress.com/2014/01/31/conservative-bill-of-rights-the-state-v-the-people/

 

In what is, or should be considered, equally as suspicious and contemptible, the Government also proposes to free itself from its Human Rights commitments against foreign nationals and war crimes, including acts of genocide.

In response to the UK Government’s proposed derogation of the from the European Convention on Human Rights regarding military operations, the Joint Committee on Human Rights (JCHR) has called for evidence and submissions.

This proposal, is designed to negate, and deny culpability, of the Government and military personnel, in Human Rights abuses; including, acts of rendition, funding of terror (White Helmets), regime change of foreign heads of state (Libya, Iraq etc), and other covert operations.

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The JCHR’s call for submissions (of no more than 3,000 words) are invited from interested groups and individuals, focusing on the following issues:

  • What evidence supports the Government’s view that “our legal system has been abused to level false charges against our troops on an industrial scale”?
  • What evidence supports the Government’s view that the extra-territorial applicability of the ECHR undermines the operational effectiveness of the Armed Forces?
  • Are the substantive requirements of Article 15 ECHR likely to be satisfied in the circumstances in which the Government intends to derogate?
  • Are there alternatives to derogation which would achieve the Government’s objective of protecting the armed forces against unfounded legal claims?
  • Are there any wider implications of the UK derogating from the extra-territorial application of the Convention in military operations, such as effects on other countries or on the European system for the collective enforcement of human rights?
  • Should the derogating measures be contained in primary legislation?
  • Is it appropriate for the Ministry of Defence to have lead responsibility for a policy the purpose of which is to protect the MoD from legal claims?

 

Interested parties can submit views through the Government’s proposed derogation from the ECHR inquiry page.

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Source: Link above.

 

Ultimately, the Government’s intentions here, which are both to repeal and lessen the impact of the HRA (including judgments of the European Courts of Justice and Human Rights); and excuse its humanitarian duties and abuses whilst involved in military operations abroad, are to make itself less accountable to and diminish the rights and freedoms of British citizens, as well as those who are or become victims of the Ministry of Defence’s interests and actions in other countries.

If you allow this to happen, kiss goodbye to whatever delusional thread of liberty you thought you ever had in the first place.

 

By Jason Lee, of the family: Schumann.

 

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