Select Committee on Constitutional Affairs Seventh Report

7  Chronology of Key events

November 1996 Chahal v UK is heard by the European Court of Human Rights
December 1997The Special Immigration Appeals Commission was established pursuant to the Special Immigration Appeals Commission Act 1997, which was brought forward in response to the cases of Chahal (and Loutchansky). The Act includes provisions for use of Special Advocates in SIAC hearings
November 1998Human Rights Act 1998 is given Royal Assent, effectively incorporating into English law the European Convention on Human Rights
December 2000Terrorism Act 2000 is given Royal Assent
September 2001Passenger jets are hijacked and flown into the World Trade Centre in New York and the Pentagon in Washington DC
October 2001The Patriot Act is passed by the US Senate providing broad definitions of terrorism, and increased powers to deal with terrorists in the USA
December 2001Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 is given Royal Assent. A 'technical state of emergency' is declared in the UK allowing the Act to derogate from the European Convention on Human Rights and the International Convention of Civil and Political Rights
January 2003Lord Carlile of Berriew QC reported on the operation of the Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001
December 2003The Privy Counsellor Review Committee under Lord Newton delivers its report on Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001. The committee "strongly recommends that the Part IV powers which allow foreign nationals to be detained potentially indefinitely should be replaced as a matter of urgency"
February 2004House of Commons debates the findings of the Newton Report and the Carlile Report and votes to keep the Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 intact. The legislation goes to the House of Lords
March 2004Court of Appeal upholds the SIAC ruling in the case of "M", granting bail. The House of Lords votes to keep Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 intact
April 2004SIAC grants bail to detainee G
July 2004High Court turns down the appeals against SIAC ruling for 10 of the remaining 12 detainees
December 2004The case of A v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2004] is heard by the House of Lords which rules that Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 s23, and the derogation from Article 5 European Convention on Human Rights which underpins it, is discriminatory, disproportionate and therefore is incompatible with the Human Rights Act
January 2005Home Secretary announces his intention to release the detainees from prison, and to replace current scheme with a provision for the 'house arrest' of all suspects, both national and non-national. He also details plans to introduce new legislation to cover British terrorist suspects
February 2005One of the detainees, a man known as 'C', who had been detained for three years' was released from Woodhill prison, without any conditions, whilst the Government agreed to release a second a second detainee, Abu Rideh, subject to conditions
March 2005Parliament passes the Prevention of Terrorism Act 2005

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