Guantanamo a “Shocking Affront to the Principles of Democracy”


The highest-ranking official in the British legal system says how he really feels about US detention policy:

Guantánamo Bay is a “shocking affront to the principles of democracy” and a violation of the rule of law, the lord chancellor, Lord Falconer, said today. …

Lord Falconer said Washington was “deliberately seeking to put the Guantánamo detainees beyond the reach of law” and that “use of torture by a state is contrary to fundamental human rights law”.

“Democracies can only survive where judges have the power to protect the rights of the individual,” he said.

Of course, Falconer has about as much pull with the Bush administration as…hmm…Tony Blair, so don’t expect this to have much effect. But it’s an indication that the pressures brought to bear on administration policies–which contributed to last week’s (very) qualified climbdown on secret prisons–is unlikely to let up.

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