New policy exposes how the government exploits mental health patients by incentivising referrals to its toxic PREVENT programme

London – New counter-terrorism rules that will give doctors incentives to refer individuals with mental health issues to PREVENT shows that the government is exploiting the doctor-patient care responsibility in an attempt to increase subscription to its toxic PREVENT programme.

The rules stipulate that urgent psychiatric care will now be provided by mental health trusts to those people with psychological problems who are referred to Prevent. This will influence doctors to refer patients to PREVENT in order to speed up treatment times.

Dr Adnan Siddiqui, CAGE Director and GP said:

“This latest move highlights the government’s determination to further the toxic PREVENT agenda under the guise of safeguarding even if it is as the expense of the wellbeing of societies most vulnerable people.”

“The government is effectively channelling psychiatric cases into a securitised policy that has been proven to damage individuals and families. The effect on doctor-patient trust and patient health will be devastating.”

“Safeguarding and public sector ethics rely on trust, and making public sector workers the handmaidens of the state, not only erodes that trust but has made no tangible improvement to national security.”

 

CC image courtesy of Vic on Flikr


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

Revealed: Home Office ‘outsourcing’ surveillance to Far Right Henry Jackson Society

London – A recent High Court Judgement has exposed how the British Government outsources the designation of “extremists” for security purposes to the right-wing charity the Henry Jackson Society (HJS).

The HJS has several well-publicised right-wing links. It has been accused of generating Islamophobia, and it is known as an illiberal organisation which supports military intervention around the world.

In the case of Dr Salman Butt v Home Office, it was revealed that the PREVENT strategy uses information gathered by the opaque and covert Extremism Analysis Unit (EAU) to identify “extremists”. The EAU in turn uses information on individuals and organisations produced and provided by the HJS.

CAGE is today releasing a comprehensive report analysing the workings of the EAU and its implications for society. You can read the report here.

Ibrahim Mohamoud, CAGE Spokesperson, said:

“A matter that has dire implications for the rights of individuals and organisations is being outsourced to right-wing units and organisations. In this way, the Home Office itself has become part of the generation of Islamophobia and the status of these shadowy groups becomes a matter of urgent concern.”

“This case has exposed the inner workings of the EAU and how it relies on neo-conservative think-tanks to understand “extremism”. These include the Centre for Social Cohesion and the Henry Jackson Society. The views of these organisations are rooted in a perception that the West is at war with Islam, and their leaders betray a deep mistrust of Muslims.”

“The Home Office appears to be adopting the views of Douglas Murray, HJS Associate Director, who in 2006 said ‘conditions for Muslims in Europe must be made harder across the board’. Such an approach does little for community relations and indeed will more than likely have a counterproductive effect.”

 


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

Home Office ‘outsourcing’ surveillance to Far Right Henry Jackson Society – Report Summary

CAGE has released a new report which for the first time reveals the inner workings of the Extremism Analysis Unit (EAU) within the Home Office and its implications for wider civil society.

The high court case of Dr Salman Butt V Home Office has exposed how the British Government outsources the designation of “extremists” for security purposes to the extreme right-wing charity the Henry Jackson Society. The judicial review has presented a number of issues of huge significance.

At the core of Dr Butt’s legal challenge to being labelled an “extremist”, were the lawfulness of PREVENT guidance; the failure to have due regard for freedom of speech when implementing the policy; and the collection and storage of data by the Extremism Analysis Unit, which was argued amounted to warrantless surveillance and was in breach of the European Commission on Human Rights guidance.

Encouragingly, the judge agreed that the PREVENT guidance does fail to have due regard to freedom of speech. This means universities will now have to weigh freedom of speech concerns up against the PREVENT duty and give platforms to speakers with this in mind.


Read more: Towards a closed society: The worrying themes of the leaked OSCT PREVENT Catalogue

However, what the judge failed to recognise were concerns related to the collection and storage of data on “extremists” by the Home Office departments Extremism Analysis Unit (EAU), a secretive group with strong neoconservative links.

He also failed to examine and interrogate the role of the Research Information and Communications Unit (RICU), which shapes the “hearts and minds” of British citizens and has been likened to Cold War propaganda units.

The witness statements in the Dr Butt’s case provided by Paul Willis from the EAU and Matt Collins from RICU provide an unprecedented look into the workings of the Home Office. These units help determine who is an “extremist”  in the UK, and it is necessary to reveal their scope and their links to dubious right-wing organisations.

The scope and focus of the EAU and RICU are broad and “fluid”

The role of the EAU is to determine and analyse “extremist” narratives, and to provide  “the Office for Counter Terrorism and other customer departments” with information about “extremist” individuals and organisations, that will affect counter-extremism policy and work.

The EAU primarily feeds information to PREVENT officers, but their “customer departments” can also be “international”. Meaning that determinations of “extremism” can be shared with foreign governments and agencies.


Read more: CVE has always been about targeting Islam and so has PREVENT

The EAU operates directly under the authority of the UK Home Secretary who is accountable to Parliament. Both the EAU and RICU assist the government in its Prevent strategy, by conducting research (EAU) and coordinating propaganda (RICU).

RICU’s extremism unit and the EAU are focussed on the threat posed by the “ideology of extremism”. They admit that their definition of extremism is “fluid” which is dangerously subjective. Furthermore, the focus of the EAU is clearly on “understanding Islamist extremism” with the majority of its resources and employees targeting Muslims.

In their focus on “extremism”, special attention is given to how “extremism” is linked to terrorism. While Collins from RICU, in his testimony, referred to a ‘perfect storm’ of conditions that lead to terrorism, he implied that ideology is a key factor.

Rather than recognising the role of stereotyping, surveillance and disenfranchisement in pushing individuals towards violence, these units are still in the business of honing in on ideas,  and “rhetoric that is anti-Western, divisive or critical of core British values”, drawing a link between these ideas and the potential to commit violence.

In order to counter these ideas, RICU invests heavily in counter-narratives by funding projects and organisations whose aim is to stop “extremism”.  While the organisations currently funded by Prevent are not publicly declared, they are increasing; in 2015 RICU delivered 130 community-based projects which reached over 42,000 participants, almost double the number funded in 2014.

RICU and the EAU’s focus on narratives that challenge those of the state, as well as on Muslims, means that both units reinforce a structural form of discrimination. This can be easily extended to other groups due to the “fluid” definitions of “extremism” and the lack of consensus over what constitute “core British values”.

RICU and the EAU draw information from discredited right-wing organisations

Not only are the EAU and RICU operating from an extremely subjective and prejudiced space, but their views on terrorism and extremism are rooted in neoconservative politics and mistrust of Muslim communities.

RICU’s Collins quotes research conducted by the Centre for Social Cohesion (CSC), which is an organisation that was set up by Civitas who have promoted Baroness Caroline Cox’s vision of a civilizational struggle between the West and Islam.

The notion that Islam is incompatible with the West is reflected in CSC’s former director, Douglas Murray. Known for his mistrust of Muslims, Murray has consistently presented Islam and Muslims as being part of an existential threat to the western world.

In 2006, Douglas Murray told members of the Dutch Parliament: “Conditions for Muslims in Europe must be made harder across the board: Europe must look like a less attractive proposition. We in Europe owe – after all – no special dues to Islam. We owe them no religious holidays, special rights or privileges.”


Read more: The Henry Jackson Society’s fear-mongering report paints a totally false picture of Terrorism and Muslims in the UK

The Centre for Social Cohesion’s counter-extremism research was subsumed into the Henry Jackson Society (HJS), with Hannah Stuart assuming her position as a researcher, and Douglas Murray becoming associate director. It’s far-right, neoconservative funding streams come from Nina Rosenwald who has been dubbed “the sugar mama of anti-Muslim hate” by journalist Max Blumenthal.

In the same vein, the EAU’s Willis explains that some of the EAU’s analysis is based on evidence provided to them by staff at the Henry Jackson Society through the organisation Student Rights, who “provide the information they were already sending to the Home Office in the form of a weekly digest” detailing extremism on campus.

The alignment of Student Rights can be understood through the involvement of Raheem Kassam as director of the organisation from 2009 to early 2014. Last year, speaking of their relationship while jointly running the neoconservative blog, The Commentator, Robin Shepherd said: “Raheem Kassam is a danger to British democracy, and the rule of law. I saw at first-hand behaviour that was so appalling it was, and remains, difficult to internalise.”

A “guidance” that has been misapplied with disastrous results

At no point do either RICU or the EAU make clear that they engage with scholars and experts from the critical terrorism studies community in order to maintain some balance in their assessments.

There is also no indication that those who have made assessments on them, are ever given an opportunity to challenge the final analysis. Rather, the EAU presents their determinations as objective and feeds them to public bodies to use in implementing PREVENT.

PREVENT in the beginning was marketed as a guidance, not an obligation. Its objective was to prevent terrorism, not so-called “extremism” – but now, in an increasingly fear-based environment, the pro-PREVENT lobby has shifted the boundaries. It is now increasingly an obligation, and its targets are the many who fall under the broad definition of “extremism”.

This has caused a misapplication of a “guidance” that was supposed to prevent political violence and which has done anything but. Not only this, it has resulted in a vicious campaign that has destroyed many lives, threatening individuals’ careers and the well-being of families.

The links between blatantly right-wing organisations and the EAU means the hunt for “extremists” is a political one, the end goal of which is to reinforce state power over individuals, organisations and families through court processes that violate due process.

CAGE calls for these court decisions to be reversed, and for families and individuals who have been branded as “extremists” based on these dubious assessments, to receive apologies for the damage it has done to their lives.


Download report here

 


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

Blacklisted: The secretive Home Office Unit silencing voices of dissent


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This report provides a unique insight, for the first time, of opaque units that work as part of the government’s counterterrorism policies, the Extremism Analysis Unit (EAU) and the Research Information and Communications Unit (RICU). These two units, in particular, assist the government in its Prevent strategy, by conducting research and coordinating propaganda.

The report also exposes the influence of far right organisations, such as the Henry Jackson Society, in the secretive process of designating individuals as ‘extremists’.

The information in this report is primarily based on two sources, witness statements given by the heads of EAU and RICU in the case of Dr Salman Butt v Secretary of State for the Home Department.

You can read the report summary here.


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

CAGE responds to senior police chief: PREVENT is a toxic policy that causes deep mistrust

London – Concerns surrounding PREVENT are well-grounded in facts and case-based research that clearly show PREVENT is a toxic policy.*

This conclusion has been echoed across the board, by hundreds of academics, politicians, trade unions, student bodies and survivors of the policy.

Moreover, the studies on which the PREVENT policy is based have also been discredited and proven to not be fit for general application.

Dr Adnan Siddiqui, CAGE Director, said:

“PREVENT is part of the state’s ever increasing intelligence and monitoring programmes as admitted by the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd. Statistics show that PREVENT overwhelmingly targets Muslims.”

“PREVENT has had a destructive effect in families and has isolated and traumatised children, causing deep mistrust. Its implementation has had an influence on the UK plummeting from a ranking of 11 to 156 in global children’s rights rankings.”

“Additionally, the policy has a counterproductive effect. It has been accused of fuelling ‘extremism’ by the former UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association.”

“The rightful rejection of the policy by communities stems from this reality, one that its interest-driven advocates would rather ignore in favour of creating further myths.”

 

CC Image courtesy of Mark Norman Francis on Flikr
*The police chief’s comments were made on BBC Asian Network


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

We need a return to justice, not more anti-terror laws

In the last 17 years, there have been 14 pieces of Anti-Terrorist Legislation foisted upon the statute books. Parliaments have come and gone, and the cyclic wheel of further draconian measures have been welcomed, embraced and directed primarily towards its Muslim populace.

Amber Rudd has made her most recent announcement: a new Counter Extremism policy unit, with statutory powers. This is no surprise. Since 9/11, and 7/7 each Home Secretary has felt incumbent to follow the same strategies that have consistently failed to address the question of violence.

Theresa May has used the latest incident at Finsbury Park to launch another attack on Muslims and civil liberties by declaring that the Queen’s speech on Wednesday will include flagship legislation to “confront the menace of extremism, especially Islamist extremism, including a statutory commission to identify and expose examples”.


Read more: CAGE calls for the abolition of anti-terror legislation

She reaffirmed the review of the official counter-terrorism strategy and, in a bid to extend its reach, included the possibility of new criminal offences to deny “safe spaces” to extremists, both online and in the real world.

A raft of legislation already exists within the criminal justice system to try offenders for the most heinous of crimes. Hate offences, rightly incorporated, result in litigation that jurists have no difficulty in administering and applying, while upholding the rule of law.

But instead of relying on the rule of law, draconian and oppressive anti-terror laws have led to the dismantling of basic protections. Despite the motives of far right activists and others, these incidents need to be subjected to the scrutiny of existing criminal law and cases must be overseen by an independent and un-politicised judicial system.

The insatiable desire by politicians to appeal to populism and its willing accomplice the right wing press, leads to a poisonous environment in which basic rights are trashed. The tragedy of the victims is exploited and the perpetrators are funnelled into a two-tier justice system where their rights are curtailed. Where is natural justice and the rule of law in all this?

The calls for tougher laws and sentences is led by former extremists and failed politicians who have created a virus that has infected the whole criminal justice system so that the use of secret evidence is normalised, mental health frailties are ignored and teenagers are given disproportionate sentences for immature comments on social media and labelled as “terrorists” for life.


Read more: Yes Prime Minister, Enough is Enough!

These former extremists and so called experts bray for blood, and internment, yet they are blind to the destruction that the policies they call for have wreaked within their communities: the disastrous PREVENT programme has meant parents are scared to teach their children their faith, 4 year old’s are referred to security services for uttering a word wrong, and 500,000 civil servants are co-opted into a mass surveillance programme.

The same careerists will be vying for position on the Extremism Commission, a body that should never have been established as it will give the witch finders a legitimacy that they do not deserve.

We do not need any more anti-terror laws. We call for the abolition of the extensive web of laws that have ensnared our fundamental freedoms and rights. We call upon all right minded people to join our struggle to return to a justice system untainted by the highly politicised nature of Terrorism laws and applied to all irrespective of their background, race or religion.

This is the right occasion to declare that we do not seek the lynch mob mentality of the terror laws to be applied to a Nazi sympathiser or anyone else. We have witnessed the abject destruction caused by the War on Terror first hand and are proud to say that we do not call for laws that demean us to be applied or to be extended further. Not in our name.

 

(cc image courtesy of David Holt on Flikr)


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

[Infographic] 7 facts the Home Office concealed: Damning data on terror arrests

The most recent data published by the Home Office on police powers under the Terrorism Act show a trend of racial discrimination and increasing evidence of what has been referred to as ‘Al Capone’ style disruption in communities.

Arrest infographic-01
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1- 70% of those arrested are never charged with a terrorism offence:

While arrests are often grandly announced in the media, a close look at their aftermath reveals that the overwhelming majority of those arrested are never charged under terrorism laws. An alarming 63% are not charged with any offence at all.

However what these numbers conceal is the impact arrests and raids under terrorism laws have on families. ‘Khalid’ who was raided by the police told CAGE:  “It is after this day that my mother and father find it hard to sleep at night. Any time there is a small movement or noise they think it’s the police.”

‘Khalid’ had to endure “a year of going through hard times and explaining to [his] family that I am not involved in terrorism”. Such is the stigma attached to victims of these raids.

His case is an example of the many who experienced raids but were never charged or convicted of a crime.


Read more: 6 months as a terror suspect, stopped, followed, raided and held on bail

2- Increase use of police bail

A trend CAGE has picked up, is the use of bail as a means to restrict individuals’ freedoms. At times clients feel that they have been placed on bail for an indefinite period of time.

When compared with the relatively small conviction rate, it seems that police bails are used vindictively with the aim of stopping otherwise innocent individuals from living freely.

‘Imran’ who was held under bail conditions for 2½ years described it “like a prison sentence without being in prison.” He said “It’s a huge burden on my shoulders. I can’t plan anything and my family and I live in fear that they may raid our home again.”

3- 90% of those arrested are not convicted under terrorism laws

Of all the 260 individuals arrested, those actually found guilty of a terrorism offence are just 10% or 26 people.

The low rate of conviction must be used as call to review policing tactics in order to improve police-community relations.

The continued heightening of tensions between police and communities, as well as the ongoing fear campaigns in the media, seem completely at odds with the figures available.

The rate of error – 90% of all arrests –  naturally gives rise to a broader attitude amongst impacted communities that they feel specifically targeted by the authorities.

4- 88.4% of those detained at ports and airports are from an ethnic minority or otherwise ‘not stated’

This shocking figure proves the discriminatory nature of the controversial Schedule 7 powers. (According to the last UK census, minorities constitute only 14% of the population).

This is further exacerbated because of 19,355 people stopped at airports, only 5 were charged with not complying or other terror related charges. This is a total of 0.02% or a rate of error 99.98%!

For years, CAGE has advocated that people should not be stopped if there is no indication they have committed a crime.


know your rights: schedule 7

As far back as 2012, former reviewer of terrorism legislation David Anderson stated: “Indeed, despite having made the necessary inquiries, I have not been able to identify from the police any case of a Schedule 7 examination leading directly to an arrest followed by a conviction in which the initial stop was not prompted by intelligence of some kind.”

All this demonstrates that Schedule 7 is of little value to detect crimes but, since it allows invasive questioning by police, it is rather a mass intelligence gathering operation.

5-  72% of those stopped and searched under terror laws are from ethnic minorities or ‘not stated’.

The police carried out 483 stops, 54% belonged to ethnic minorities, a further 18% refused to state, and only 28% identified as white. These stops target and profiles communities in a similar fashion as it once did black communities.

Ayman Marwa, who was stopped under these powers, said: “I was traumatised by the arrest. Before I used to have a fear of people, because I was a victim of a stabbing, and now I also fear the police. I have nerve damage on my left side and I also have a colostomy bag. The police showed no regard for my health conditions despite my protests and agony. The reason they allege [they stopped me] was because I was carrying a box, that I bought from a hardware store, which they believed was an explosive.”

Hindering the lives of the innocent

There is a clear continuation of the trend of ‘disruption’, an approach by security services which focusses on hindering the lives of ‘suspected’ individuals rather than prosecuting them.

It short-cuts due process since individuals are not given the chance to be presumed innocent nor are they allowed to challenge the assumptions made against them.


Read more: The Henry Jackson Society’s fear-mongering report paints a totally false picture of Terrorism and Muslims in the UK

From CAGE’s work, we have observed that this disruption targets Muslims disproportionately. Officially, however, these statistics remain hidden from the public. The data remains incomplete when it comes to publishing the faith distribution of those impacted, especially in airport stops where this data is recorded according to numerous testimonies we’ve collected.

This gives credence to the belief that these statistics, should they be released, would be highly embarrassing for police, who are continually insisting that they do not target Muslims.


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

Home Office Propaganda Unit admits actions of armed forces are linked to “radicalisation”

A recent court judgement based on an argument from the government’s domestic propaganda unit, research information and communications unit (RICU), has resulted in the censoring of a video clip of British marine Alexander Blackman executing a wounded Taliban fighter.

Though several media companies argued that the clip should be aired as it was in the public interest to do so, the judge repeated the Home Office’s RICU head Paul Wilson’s words when he said: “It [the video] would provide terrorists with material they could use to underpin their ‘justification’ for undertaking terrorist attacks against the western powers and to underpin their extremist narrative at a tactical and strategic level.”

“They would use it to argue that western powers are corrupt, do not adhere to their own rules such as the military rules of engagement and the Geneva Conventions and claim that this was the way the armed forces of the western powers treat insurgents on the battlefield.”

There are four important issues that emerge from the judgement in this case which need to be brought to the fore.

Actions of British armed forces can be linked to political violence

The British government, in its counter extremism strategy in 2015, focusses on ideology as the key driver of “radicalisation”.

This approach, which led to a strategy that targets ideas and beliefs, has since bolstered disastrous state interventions such as PREVENT, widely discredited through its lack of scientific basis linking ideology to “terrorism”.


Read more: Is the government’s PREVENT ‘science’ really peer-reviewed?

Up until now the government has refused to acknowledge the link between political grievances such as anger and disillusionment with British foreign policy, and political violence. In fact the government’s basis for its radicalisation theory, the ERG 22+ fails to acknowledge political factors at all.

However in this case, the judge, with the support of RICU itself, has admitted there is a link between the behaviour of British armed forces in Afghanistan, and political violence. In other words, the actions of British armed forces can be responsible for what the state terms “radicalisation”.

It must be noted that when the government advocates PREVENT, it disregards the actions of its armed forces abroad as a motivator for political violence, and yet as soon as their narrative stands to be damaged, the state provides the same links between armed forces atrocities and political violence that opponents of PREVENT and counter terrorism laws have always argued.

This is an important point that needs to be highlighted, amplified, and further acknowledged by those in power: that violence abroad is linked to violence at home.

RICU provided integral contribution to the court judgement

It is also worth noting that in this case the opinions of a government department formed an integral basis for the final judgement.

The government’s RICU has been at the forefront of a Cold War-style propaganda programme directed at Muslims. This programme has centred on funding organisations supposedly representing Muslims so they can spread information that is supportive of its counter-terrorism programmes. These counter-terrorism programmes themselves are detrimental to the cohesiveness of Muslim and broader society.

RICU has been at the forefront of this “soft” but deeply structural form of oppression against its own citizens.


Read more: [Infographic] How PREVENT propaganda makes its way to you

It is disturbing then, that the propaganda arm of the government is wielding such a strong influence in this particular case – to such an extent that the judge repeats almost verbatim the highly politicised words of the state propaganda chief Paul Wilson.

Double standards in the courtroom and outside

Blackman has subsequently had his murder conviction overturned and reduced to manslaughter on the ground of diminished responsibility due to psychological illness. He will now serve only 7 years as opposed to his previous life sentence.

However what the public discourse around Blackman’s case lacked – in contrast with Muslim’s convicted of similar crimes – was the attempt to tarnish entire communities, investigate “radicalisation” at places of worship, or assess if his actions were influenced by extremist beliefs.

Neither did we see the terms “terrorist” loosely brandished, nor did we see the judge link his actions to a belief in white supremacy.

It is only late last year that a high court judge deemed the actions of a clearly mentally disturbed Muslim, Muhyiddin Mire, to have been “carried out to advance a religious or ideological cause, namely Islamic extremism”. Despite the similarities between the two cases, there is a clear disparity in how each of them was dealt with in the public eye.

It’s not only about censorship; it’s about justice

Several media outlets said the video should have been aired because it was in the public interest to do so.

On the other hand, some might argue that censoring the video is in fact a more powerful indictment of the act than releasing it. Indeed some acts of violence are too deplorable to show, and in silencing, sometimes the suffering of victims becomes more potent.

It is crucial then that the discussion around this issue not become about whether or not the video be censored – though this too does have its merits in debate – but about how we react to the inhumanity that nobody can deny is clearly evident within it.

The moral decay present in Blackman’s company was recently attested to in court by former senior officer Oliver Lee, who described Blackman’s company as “completely out of control”.

Sketching scenes that could have been taken from ‘Apocalypse Now’, Lee said another senior officer had described the company as “psychologically defeated, bereft of ideas, unpredictable and dangerous”.

Lee accused a second company also operating in Helmand, Afghanistan of the same, and said both companies dehumanised the local people and had “scant regard” for the rules of engagement.

The campaign which lead to his charge being reduced, seemed to focus on the “stress” experienced by soldiers. However as columnist Giles Fraser, who taught leadership and ethics to newly promoted majors, said: “Everyone in Helmand was stressed. Not everyone shot their prisoners.”

Tabloids that are heralding Marine A, Blackman, as a hero and victim of injustice will only serve to perpetuate the very narrative the head of RICU feared the release of the video would cause.

In many ways, the release of the footage is not so much about the content, horrific as it is, but on how much we as a society value the principles of equal justice.


Download our report: The Science of Pre-Crime

 

(Image courtesy of MOD)


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

The ECHR decision on citizenship removal case endorses unjust practices

The  consequences of the ECHR’s decision in the case of ‘K2’, a dual British-Sudanese citizen who had his UK citizenship revoked, will lead to a greater use of secret evidence.

The use of secret evidence has poisoned the UK legal system and prevents individuals and their lawyers from seeing evidence relevant to them, making it impossible to answer allegations. Accordingly, secret evidence undermines a transparent and fair judicial process. It destroys the concept of natural justice. The record of the ECHR in protecting minorities from discrimination has been abysmal and this is a further indication of its hostility to protecting the rights of marginalised groups.

A growing number of Muslim men who lose their citizenship are left in a form of ‘medieval exile’, unable to re-enter the UK and unable to challenge the decision against them.

Ibrahim Mohamoud, spokesperson for CAGE, said:

“The real impact of this court decision is the ever growing, pervasive use of secret evidence being admitted in UK courts. Such unjust practices are becoming normalised in immigration, criminal and even family court cases.”

“It is unfortunate that the judiciary and legal profession have not resisted such an assault on fundamental values. As a result, we have a two tier justice system for minority communities, with Muslims especially affected.”

“Citizenship stripping has been gathering pace (also see here, here) at an alarming rate under the Conservative government. As with previous cases, the decision of the court to accept ‘K2’’s citizenship removal denies him any chance of a successful appeal. As with other anti-terror policies the current victims are Muslims but the template will be used against other groups to erode the civil liberties of all and not just a suspect community.”

 

 

Press enquiries:
Ibrahim Mohamoud
Communications Officer
press@cageuk.org


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.

Leaked government document names ‘vetted’ organisations in receipt of £1.2 million in PREVENT funding

(London) – A Home Office document titled ‘Local Delivery Best Practice Catalogue’ leaked by Public Interest Investigations highlights in full organisations and projects vetted and funded by the government to deliver the controversial PREVENT strategy nationally. Produced by the OSCT (Office for Security and Counter Terrorism), the document reveals:

– The OSCT’s admission that Faith on the Frontline; FAST, #MakingAStand (delivered by Inspire) and A Tale of Two Cities (film) are all ‘products’ of the Home Office’s Research, Information and Communications Unit (RICU).

– The direct relationship between the OSCT and ‘third party provider’ organisations.

– The costs associated with these programmes and the specific locations it targeted at.

– The names of the ‘grass-roots’ organisations delivering government vetted projects.

Most notably the document refers to amongst many:

  • Faith Associates (Imams Online being one of their flagship projects),
  • Upstanding Neighbourhoods,
  • Families Against Stress and Trauma (FAST),
  • Active Change Foundation (ACF)
  • and London Tigers.

Despite being dated March 2015, the document highlights that the projects will be used to produce a best practice catalogue once the evaluation period is completed in March 2016.

Asim Qureshi, CAGE Research Director, said:

“These revelations call for a serious dialogue within the Muslim community on the legitimacy of government sanctioned activism. It also highlights the government’s deceptive approach in engaging with Muslim communities and again calls into question the failing PREVENT policy and its shadow, the global CVE campaign.”

“This document also conclusively demonstrates the relationship and oversight the Home Office has over ostensibly community led projects. CAGE’s earlier report “We are completely independent” and The Guardian revelations, have previously highlighted these points and demonstrated how RICU was in effect directing and attempting to manufacture consent for PREVENT amongst Muslim communities.”


NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.