London – A British High Court decision to allow evidence in a rendition case to be heard in secret for the first time is an injustice where possible criminal conduct by government agents is being covered up.
The decision was made in a case brought against the British government by Amanatullah Ali and Yunus Rahmatullah, two Pakistani men who allege they were wrongfully arrested, renditioned, imprisoned and tortured for ten years by British forces.
The ruling means that lawyers for the Ministry of Defence and the Foreign Office will be allowed to present certain evidence behind closed doors, in the name of “protecting national security”.
The evidence will therefore not be seen by the two claimants, their lawyers, journalists or members of the public, the very people who are able to scrutinise and challenge it.
Ibrahim Mohamoud, spokesperson for CAGE, said:
“It is a grave concern for justice when the British government will go so far as to violate the rule of law in order to cover up possible criminal conduct by its members.”
“Such developments are a violation of an individual’s right to a fair trial. Amanatullah Ali and Yunus Rahmatullah simply must be allowed to challenge the evidence held against them. Not allowing this means the trial itself descends into farce.”
(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.)