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    5. Ben Wallace: Human rights laws protect terrorists


    Ben Wallace: Human rights laws protect terrorists

    Mr Wallace said Britain was now forced to choose between killing people or allowing them to continue the plot. Photo: AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, File

    Human rights laws, including the ECHR, have become a serious threat to national security and undermine efforts to stop terrorists, warned Ben Wallace, the former defense secretary.

    Speaking for the first time Since leaving his Cabinet post, Mr Wallace has criticized the “madness” of legislation which he says shields terror suspects plotting against Britain from abroad by preventing their capture.< /p>

    He told The Telegraph that because of international treaties such as the European Convention on Human Rights, defense ministers were forced to choose between killing people, usually with drones, or allowing them to continue their plot.

    Mr Wallace warned: “When we have a threat to Britain, the madness of not being able to get people across borders or arrest people in countries where police force is unacceptable means we are more often forced to commit lethal actions, rather than carrying out raids and arrests.”

    The former defense secretary said that while under international law the UK could take action against an imminent threat in a foreign country, missions that could lead to rendition – the extrajudicial transfer of a suspect from one country to another – were blocked.

    Asked if he had encountered such situations as defense secretary, Mr. Wallace replied: “I have dealt with such cases.”

    He added: “Yes, I have come across conspiracies and fortunately we have taken action. But did I have the range of options I wanted? No. I had very few options and wanted a broader range.”

    He warned that the current situation made it impossible for the UK to carry out raids similar to those carried out by the US on Osama bin Laden's compound.

    “If we had found Osama bin Laden, we would not have been able to do what the Americans did. We could not carry out such a raid,” he said.

    He added: “We had the right to deal with the immediate threat. We could throw a Tomahawk missile. If we had done an American model where they came in helicopters, I would now be told you can't do that because we can't take them out of the country.”

    President Barack Obama and his Cabinet are waiting for an update on the 2011 raids on Osama bin Laden's compound – an operation that Wallace said Britain couldn't do. Photo: PETE SOUZA/White House/AFP via Getty Images

    In July, Wallace announced that he would step down as defense secretary in the next reshuffle, to be replaced by Grant Shapps in August. He will stand down as an MP at the next election.

    Describing the growing risk to Britain, he criticized sentimentality towards those planning to kill and maim British citizens, saying the Armed Forces must be able to capture Islamic State militants ” and Al-Qaeda are alive.

    The former defense secretary said work begun by former justice secretary Dominic Raab on a Bill of Rights, which would give British courts the power to overrule decisions of European judges, would help solve the problem.

    “We need some clarity; we need to modernize legal structures and laws to reflect the transnational nature of terrorism and threats,” he said. “This allows terrorists in secure locations with access to mobile phones to direct, inspire and arm people to kill British citizens.

    “Terrorists take advantage of this. We are stuck with an extradition policy that does not recognize that there is a gap between extradition and non-compliant states.

    “If you don't have an extradition treaty…there are currently countries that host terrorists who directly are threatening Britain and they know they are doing it. They are not going to obey or help.

    “I am not going so far as to say that we should abandon the ECHR, but if the international human rights movement does not recognize that the world we live in today is transnational, and technology has made it possible, as never before, not only to protect the rights of people, but and force people to take more extreme measures.

    “If you care about human rights, you need to renew yourself, because otherwise they are dead. Do you really want them to be tried by an independent judiciary and jury?

    Rwanda at center of debate

    The ECHR is at the center of a row over the government's plans to deport asylum seekers who enter the country. country illegally to Rwanda.

    Deportation flights to the African country have been suspended since June last year, when a single judge of the European Court of Human Rights issued an eleventh-hour injunction blocking the first deportation of asylum seekers.

    p>Things are progressing as usual. through the courts, with the Tories (implied to include Cabinet ministers) urging the Prime Minister to withdraw from the ECHR if the policy is ultimately blocked.

    Mr Wallace said the UK The last decade has been fortunate due to the existence of safe airspace in places where terrorists operate.

    These included Iraq, Afghanistan before the Taliban took over, and even Syria, where the Russians did not stand in the way of the West while their planes were targeting to the Islamic State.

    However, he is particularly concerned about new threats coming from Syria and Afghanistan, where he believes it will soon become even more difficult for British special forces and the RAF to operate.

    “We have been able to use drones and aircraft to carry out kinetic strikes on suspects in terrorism,” he said. “But what happens when either that consent is withdrawn or the airspace is no longer safe but you still have an imminent threat to Britain?”

    “We are not far off from the moment when the airspace will be closed in Syria,” he added, warning that President Assad is close to taking full control of the country.

    Syria&# The President of the 39th country, Assad, whom Mr. Wallace warned, is close to taking full control of the country and closing its airspace. Photo: SAUDI PRESS AGENCY

    “Now we have a problem: the British government could have an ISIS cell preparing, planning, leading and equipping a murderous plan in the UK, and the only way to stop it would be a kinetic strike or raid across a friendly border. stop these people,” he said.

    “The problem with the last option is that with the current position you cannot do that, because if you raid across the border and the people surrender, nothing will happen to them There's nothing you can do.

    “You can't hand them over to the Syrian regime and you can't drag them across the border because extradition is considered illegal.

    “We extradite through extradition, but how do you extradite people who pose an immediate threat to your people and citizens?

    “How do you arrest people who, in the context of the tolerance of the host country, are plotting to harm the UK?”

    “Ridiculous Position 22”

    Mr Wallace said the number of safe havens for “Britain’s enemies” was growing around the world.

    “Our options are shrinking. Previously, this could have been a kinetic air strike, but with air defense this is much more difficult to deal with.

    “Traditional old-fashioned methods, what we call 'outside-in', where special forces can be thrown in to deal with a threat and eliminate it, are frustrated by the fear of what will happen if they give up. What to do with them then?

    Mr Wallace warned that Russia would soon block access to Syrian airspace and that groups such as al-Qaeda and the Islamic State were making a comeback in Afghanistan.< /p>

    “Getting permission from the host government is one thing,” he said. “Getting detention in the ECHR is another matter.

    “Somalia may say you can blow up al-Shabab because they are our enemies too, but if we come in and they surrender, we They will say that their detention procedures do not meet the requirements. This is a ridiculous Catch-22 position that does not reflect the threat.

    “There are a number of individuals who pose an immediate threat to the UK and I would rather see them caught than get a deal. by strike,” he added.

    “We need to make sure that the defense minister and the future prime minister have at their disposal the widest possible range of safe spaces and rogue space. We don't currently have that.

    “If, for example, there was an ISIS plot in some Central African country, under international law we have the right to take action with or without the permission of the host country, but we could not catch the bad guys – all we could do was kill them.”

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