| PETITION Theresa May to review the use of Schedule 7 of Terrorism Act!

.@ukhomeoffice: Theresa May, review the use of Schedule 7 of Terrorism Act ~

  • Petition by Adeel Akhtar, London.

    On Sunday David Miranda, the Brazilian partner of Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald who has written stories about revealing mass surveillance programmes by the US Government, was held at Heathrow Airport under the UK Terrorism Act. He was released without charge after nine hours.

    Being detained by authorities can be terrifying for an innocent person. Unfortunately I know how David feels. Ten years ago, I was returning to New York from London where I was studying when I was detained for several hours on ‘suspicion of terrorism’ – their reason? I looked ‘familiar’. It was a traumatic experience which left me feeling powerless and let down, fearful that when travelling I’ll be singled out and have to go through the same thing again.

    Glenn Greenwald told the BBC: “They never asked him about a single question at all about terrorism or anything relating to a terrorist organisation. They spent the entire day asking about the reporting I was doing and other Guardian journalists were doing on the NSA stories.”

    Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000 allows the police to detain anyone at the UK’s borders without any requirement to show probable cause and hold them for up to nine hours, without seeking further justification.

    Schedule 7 has a become a blunt legal instrument that the UK government can use to intimidate people who it doesn’t agree with. I think it’s time for the Government to review how it uses Schedule 7. Please join me.

    Theresa May, Home Office
    Review the use of Schedule 7 of Terrorism Act

    [Your name]



    1. Reached 25,000 signatures


    Reasons for signing

      • about 8 hours ago
      •   Liked 40

      This detention is monstrous and shows the lie behind the government’s favourite claim ‘if you haven’t done anything wrong you have nothing to fear’. It’s an abuse of power worthy of a dictatorship, but because it’s in the UK we’re all supposed to shut up and put up with it.

      • about 7 hours ago
      •   Liked 33

      Detaining David Miranda in this way has nothing to do with terrorism. Government officials were merely trying to intimidate a person whose partner has done amazing things in exposing the deceitful behaviour of our government as it works alongside the worlds biggest terrorist, the USA.

      • about 7 hours ago
      •   Liked 24

      This detention has nothing to do with protecting us from terror, but more to do with terrorizing those who would oppose or question those who abuse their power.

      • about 7 hours ago
      •   Liked 23

      This is a disgusting violation of democracy giving unfounded and unjustified powers to the state to stop and hold people they don’t like. I don’t trust the state or any authority enough with this power. The threat of terrorism is played over and over to us even though more people in the US/UK have been harmed by fireworks than terrorism since 2000. This power absolutely needs to be reviewed before it compromises our freedom and democracy.

    • amanda moss LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 7 hours ago
      •   Liked 19





| UK: Detention of David Miranda – is this a disturbing use of State power?

Detention of David Miranda – is this a disturbing use of State power? ~ 

Law and Lawyers.

Detention of David Miranda – is this a disturbing use of State power?

BBC 19th August – David Miranda detention: MP asks for explanation and see Cameron proves Greenwald right.

A new week opens with a disturbing story about the use of Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act.  The Guardian – Glenn Greenwald: detaining my partner was a failed attempt at intimidation – tells the story of how David Miranda was detained for 9 hours at Heathrow Airport without access to either a lawyer or others.   This post takes a brief look at the Schedule 7 power to question.

It is as well to begin with the Terrorism Act 2000 s.1 where the word ‘terrorism’ is defined for the purposes of law in the UK.   In this Act “terrorism” means the use or threat of action where –

(a) the action falls within subsection (2),

(b) the use or threat is designed to influence the government or an international governmental organisation or to intimidate the public or a section of the public, and

(c) the use or threat is made for the purpose of advancing a political, religious, racial or ideological cause.

Actions within subsection 2 are those where the action – (a) involves serious violence against a person, (b) involves serious damage to property, (c) endangers a person’s life, other than that of the person committing the action, (d) creates a serious risk to the health or safety of the public or a section of the public, or (e) is designed seriously to interfere with or seriously to disrupt an electronic system.

The word ‘action’ includes action outside the UK and the word ‘government’ extends to the government of the United Kingdom, of a Part of the United Kingdom or of a country other than the United Kingdom.

Terrorism Act 2000 s.40  is where the term ‘Terrorist’ is defined and, under s40(1)(b), it means a person who is or has been concerned in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism.

Schedule 7 is headed Port and Border Controls.  This gives an ‘examining officer’ power to question a person for the purpose of determining whether he appears to be a person falling within s40(1)(b).  The officer may exercise his powers whether or not he has grounds for suspecting that a person falls within s40(1)(b).  The person may be detained for questioning for up to 9 hours from the time his examination begins.  Schedule 8 applies to such detention.  The use of Schedule 7 may or may not result in the arrest of the person –section 41.

Hence, on its face, the authorities are empowered to detain and question a person for 9 hours regardless of whether they have any suspicion relating to that person.  The questioning has to be aimed at determining whether the person is or has been concerned in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism.

Why was Mr Miranda questioned?  Glenn Greenwald’s article offers a possible clue:

‘David had spent the last week in Berlin, where he stayed with Laura Poitras, the US filmmaker who has worked with me extensively on the National Security Agency stories. A Brazilian citizen, he was returning to our home in Rio de Janeiro this morning on British Airways, flying first to London and then on to Rio. When he arrived in London this morning, he was detained.’

The activities of the National Security Agency (USA) and its British counterpart GCHQ have been in the news extensively in recent weeks -Watching the Law – International Big Brother.  This prompted Foreign Secretary William Hague to assert in the House of Commons that British security services had acted within the law – Statement of 10th June.    On 17th July, Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) said that it was satisfied that UK security services did not break the law by accessing personal data through the US Prism programme – STATEMENT of Sir Malcolm Rifkind (the ISC’s Chairman).

The extent of governmental surveillance activities over citizens is a matter of enormous public concern and investigative journalists are keen to raise awareness of any such surveillance programmes.  It would be shameful if the Schedule 7 power were being used as a method of intimidation of either journalists or those connected to journalists such as members of their families.  Greenwald stated:

If the UK and US governments believe that tactics like this are going to deter or intimidate us in any way from continuing to report aggressively on what these documents reveal, they are beyond deluded. If anything, it will have only the opposite effect: to embolden us even further. Beyond that, every time the US and UK governments show their true character to the world – when they prevent the Bolivian President’s plane from flying safely home, when they threaten journalists with prosecution, when they engage in behavior like what they did today – all they do is helpfully underscore why it’s so dangerous to allow them to exercise vast, unchecked spying power in the dark.

Schedule 7 has been the subject of reports by the Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation:

Schedule 7 is the subject of a challenge before the European Court of Human Rights – (here).  In May 2013, the court declared the case admissible – see the admissibility judgment Sabure Malik v UK.

Joshua Rozenberg – David Miranda Detention: Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act explained 

Note:  Schedule 7 of the anti-social behaviour, crime and policing bill, which has completed its committee stage in the House of Commons, would cut the maximum period to six hours and introduce other safeguards.



| Woolwich suspect’s friend arrested after appearing on Newsnight!

Woolwich suspect’s friend arrested after appearing on Newsnight ~  and , The Guardian.

Man detained after claiming on television that Michael Adebolajo was tortured in Kenya and harassed by MI5 agents.
Abu Nusaybah Newsnight
Abu Nusaybah: ‘I believe that certain events that happened to [Adebolajo] recently had an impact in shaping the changes.’ Photograph: BBC
A friend of one of the suspected killers of a soldier butchered in a London street was arrested by counter-terrorism officers yesterday after going on television to allege that Michael Adebolajo was tortured in Kenya and harassed by MI5 – who asked him to spy for them.The allegations came from Abu Nusaybah, who was arrested under terrorism legislation minutes after finishing recording his interview for BBC Newsnight.The Guardian understands that Nusaybah is connected to extremists formerly in the banned group al-Muhajiroun. Counter-terrorism officers turned up at reception at the BBC’s central London headquarters as his interview was being recorded an hour before it was broadcast. The officers waited, then arrested Nusaybah as he left the BBC’s headquarters.In the interview, Abu Nusaybah in part attributed Adebolajo’s radicalisation to his alleged ill-treatment in Kenya.

Nusaybah alleged that Adebolajo was arrested while studying in a village in Kenya last year. After refusing to answer questions, Adebolajo was told that he was “not in the UK” and was then, he claimed, sexually assaulted. On his return, “he became more reclined [sic], less talkative. He wasn’t his bubbly self,” said Nusaybah, who said that the experience further radicalised Adebolajo.

The Guardian has learned that, last year, Adebolajo went to a lawyer to complain of harassment by MI5, who are drawing criticism today for knowing about the 28-year-old but not assessing him to be a bigger terrorist threat.

He was arrested at the scene of the soldier’s murder in Woolwich on Wednesday in the first terror-related death on mainland Britain since the 7 July 2005 bombings.

The Guardian also understands from Whitehall sources that they were aware that Adebolajo was detained in Kenya before being deported.

Nusaybah said he had known Adebolajo since they grew up together in Romford, Essex.

Since the attack on the soldier, Lee Rigby, on Wednesday, a total of six people have been arrested. Nusaybah’s was the first under counter-terrorism laws; the rest have been detained under regular criminal laws. Nusaybah was arrested on suspicion of the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism under the Terrorism Act 2000.

Asked about the unusual sequence of events leading to the arrest, the Metropolitan police said: “He was not arrested because of his comments on Newsnight.”

The police would not say what led to his arrest, which BBC insiders said had left them shocked. Police also said he was not arrested in connection to the murder of Lee Rigby. Nusaybah’s home is understood to be one of two addresses in east London being searched by officers after his arrest.

In the interview, Abu Nusaybah described how the two men became friends after meeting in Romford in 2002, before both had converted to Islam. “I used to go there to chill out with friends,” he said. “One day we bumped into each other. You didn’t see a lot of black guys down there, so we talked and swapped numbers.” The two men converted to Islam independently in 2004. “I came into Islam in 2004 and he came in four months later,” Nusaybah said.

He also confirmed that Adebolajo frequented meetings of the now-banned al-Muhajiroun group, where he listened to the preachings of extremist clerics. “He attended some of their activities, but he was an independent guy. He would float about,” Nusaybah said.

Adebolajo did not want to see sharia law imposed in Britain, but thought it more sensible for someone like him to go and live in a Muslim country, according to the interviewee. “He wanted to be qualified to teach and to do fitness training. He could use that to go abroad and live in a Muslim country.”

Abu Nusaybah said that he believed that Adebolajo became radicalised about six months ago. He said he saw profound changes in Adebolajo’s character at that time, which he attributed to his experiences in Kenya and to events on his return to Britain. “I believe that certain events that happened to him recently had an impact in shaping the changes. He became more reclined [sic], less talkative. He wasn’t his bubbly self,” he said.

Adebolajo had told Nusaybah how he had gone to study in a village in Kenya when he and others were rounded up by the Kenyan army. When he was interrogated, he refused to speak. “They told him, ‘You are not in the UK now.’ They took his private parts and said, ‘We will F you.’ He told me he was physically assaulted and sexually threatened. If you looked at his face, he was holding back tears,” Nusaybah said.

When Adebolajo returned to England, he was interviewed by MI5 officers and, according to Nusaybah, was planning to leave again to live in a Muslim country. “His whole concept was he wanted to live in a Muslim land because at the time he was being harassed by MI5.

“They were knocking and knocking on his door. He pretended not to be there, but then he spoke to the agent. They said, ‘We just want to speak to you.’ They wanted to ask him if he knew certain people,” he said.

“But after him saying that he didn’t know these individuals, he said they asked him if he would be interested in working for them. He was explicit in that he refused to work for them but he did confirm he didn’t know the individuals.”

“His word was, ‘They are bugging me,'” said Nusaybah.

In a statement about the arrest, Scotland Yard said: “At around 2130 hours on Friday 24 May, a 31-year-old man was arrested in London by officers from the MPS Counter-Terrorism Command on suspicion of the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism under the Terrorism Act 2000. The man has been taken to a south London police station, where he remains in custody. Search warrants are being executed at two residential addresses in east London.”


Perhaps it’s finally  time to think up an ethical foreign policy that doesn’t antagonise so many, time for evidence-based strategies to ensure such violence does not return to the streets of the UK.

common sense001

| False-flag frenzy: London 2012: 2 Muslim converts arrested over Olympic terror plot!

London 2012: Two Muslim converts arrested over Olympic terror plot ~ , The Telegraph.

Sources said the arrests were based on a tip-off after men were seen behaving suspiciously close to the venue in Waltham Abbey, Hertfordshire on Monday.

Hertfordshire police officers began combing the banks after three men were seen in a dinghy on the River Lea.

The two men, aged 18 and 32, were arrested at separate residential addresses in east London, by officers from the Metropolitan Police Counter-Terrorism Command, at 7am on Thursday morning.

They were detained under the Terrorism Act 2000 on suspicion of the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism and held at a central London police station.

A friend of the arrested men named the 18-year-old as Jamal ud-Din and said the older man was someone he knew only as “Zakariya.”

Mizanur Rahman, 29, said the arrests “might have had something to do with the fact that they recently went canoeing” on the River Lea, a branch of which runs through the Olympic site in east London.

“It’s just people trying to get into the Olympic spirit,” he said, but he believed the authorities would try “painting it as jihad training.”


Two men suspected of plotting an Olympic terror attack are being held at Paddington Green police station in west London

Two men suspected of plotting an Olympic terror attack are being held at Paddington Green police station in west London Photo: Ian Jones