London – As the European Court of Human Rights unanimously ruled this week that Schedule 7 powers breach human rights and lack adequate legal safeguards against abuse, the British government is poised to implement the new CTBS Act, which includes Schedule 3, a policy that gives border police even more powers to stop and search individuals.
The ECHR ruling followed a case brought by Sylvie Beghal, a French national of Algerian descent, who was stopped after arriving with her children at East Midlands Airport on a flight from Paris in 2011.
Muhammad Rabbani, CAGE International Director who was convicted of a Terrorism offence for not complying with a Schedule 7 stop in order to protect a survivor of torture said:
“Whilst judges in Europe were considering this, Schedule 7 continued to impact tens of thousands of people transiting through UK borders. Now, with the CTBS Act being passed into law, stops at UK borders are even more likely to result in abuse. The Rule of Law requires that state powers are not racist or Islamophobic. The evidence is that, with racial profiling at its heart, Schedule 7 is targeted at minority ethnic communities and those who are regarded as activists.”
“In November 2017, I failed to comply with what is now acknowledged by the ECHR as an unjust law. As a result I was charged with a terrorism offence. Certainly, future generations will look back in shame at how easy it is to be labelled a ‘terrorist’ or an ‘extremist’ in this country, with little, if any, due process required.”
“CAGE has documented numerous cases of abuse during Schedule 7 stops and in the broader use of Terrorism powers. We call on right thinking people to join our campaign to abolish these policies and prevent further stigmatisation of a generation of Muslims and activists.”
(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.)