Appendix 1: Memorandum from Mr Belal Ballali
Whether the new criminal offences in
Part 1 of the Terrorism Act 2006 (encouragement of terrorism and
dissemination of terrorist publications) have inhibited legitimate
freedom of expression, association and religion, and if so, how.
The difficulty with this legislation is not just
the definition of terrorism but also what is encouragement of
terrorism. Would saying that you understand the frustration of
a Palestinian would be suicide bomber, who has seen his father
being killed, had his house demolished and is regularly objected
to humiliating searches at a check point on his way to work, encouragement.
Are the Iraqis who believe that there country has been illegally
invaded by a foreign force a terrorist.
With this in mind, a law abiding citizen would be
stuck in a dilemma regarding the above and left asking his/her
self, is it an offence to say what I am thinking or is it my civil
right to express my views in a free society.
Whether the new grounds on which organisations
can be proscribed in s. 21 of the Terrorism Act 2006 have inhibited.
legitimate freedom of association.
This point is less complicated but in some instances
may leave one in a dilemma. Organisations such as Al-Qaeda are
clearly terrorist organisations. However, other organisations,
such as those in Kashmir and the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group,
are not. These are organisations that are not known to have targeted
civilians, nor have they been involved in global terrorism and
have concentrated their efforts to their localities. I believe
that to proscribe such organisations undermines not only the legislation
but also the governments responsible for it.
Whether the UK complies with the duty
to investigate and either extradite or prosecute terrorist suspects.
Although the UK complies with its obligation not
to deport an individual to a country where they may be mistreated,
the fear is that the country where this individual is wanted may
indeed decide to deport them to a country where mistreatment may
occur. However, if the individual has committed a crime and is
on our territory then it should be our courts that try him/her.
This is important as we can then ensure that the rule of law is
Whether the measures adopted by the
UK to protect and support the victims of terrorism are adequate.
I must say that many of those who were affected by
the 7/7 bombings felt somewhat isolated. This is a serious issue
which any serious government must fully understand.
Finally may I take this opportunity to thank you
for giving due consideration to my concerns.