UK Tories pushing to scrap human rights act
The UK’s new Justice Secretary, Michael Gove is pushing forward with controversial Conservatives’ plans to scrap the Human Rights Act.
Gove has returned to the cabinet with the job of scrapping the Act, a long-held Tory pledge which has caused alarm among human rights experts who claim the party wants to reduce rights, Huffpost reported.
The move would scrap European laws which include right to life, the right to a fair trial, and the right not to be enslaved or tortured - but PM David Cameron plans to introduce a 'British Bill of Rights' to replace the Act and protect similar rights.
Now Human Rights Activist Lee Jasper says, “The British government’s proposal to abolish the human rights act is a fundamental error. This will lead to loss of Britain’s standing in the world as being a signatory to the European Convention of Human Rights, it will increase the level of human rights abuses that take place in the country currently and it will be a denial of justice for millions; over 8 million black and ethnic minority citizens.”
Jasper told Press TV’s UK Desk on Monday that “the consequences of this are likely to be much more intrusive and regressive security, anti-security counter-terrorism legislations. Much more aggression in violation of individual rights by the police services and, etc. So whichever way you look at it having this human rights protection removed will simply increase levels of discrimination and repression on ordinary British citizens, here in the United Kingdom.”
Aspects of European guidance on human rights have caused tensions in Britain, such as a ruling saying that it is illegal to ban all prisoners from voting - which contradicts parts of British law. David Cameron has said the idea of prisoners being allowed to vote makes him "feel physically sick".
This is the first time the Conservatives have the power to drop the Act - which was introduced by Labour in 1998 - because they were blocked in the last government by the Liberal Democrats, their coalition partners, who are committed to keeping the laws in place.
But after winning a Conservative majority for the first time in more than two decades, the Tories are reportedly keen to push through abolition of the Act, which is expected to be in The Queen's Speech on 28 May.