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Lord Judd: My Lords, the will of the Commons should ultimately prevail. That is a constitutional principle to which I strongly adhere. However, I cannot vote for a measure which I believe to be wrong, fundamentally flawed and, worst of all, counter-productive. I shall therefore abstain, but with considerable misgivings, because my own convictions on the matter before the House would have me voting against what I believe to be the misguided will of the majority in the Commons.

There have been references to the Joint Committee on Human Rights. I am a member of that committee. We have reached and reported clear conclusions on the Government's proposals; they are there for all to read. Apart from the important issue of intent, our concerns centred on the vagueness of the glorification requirement, the breadth of the definition of terrorism, and the lack of any requirement to demonstrate as part of the offence the likelihood of terrorist offences being caused. We became convinced, and so we reported to both Houses, that to make the new offence compatible with Article 10 of the European convention, it would be necessary to delete references to glorification, insert a more tightly drawn definition of terrorism, and insert into the definition of the offence requirements of intent and likelihood. It is particularly unconvincing to pursue the legislation unyieldingly when the Government have asked the noble Lord, Lord Carlile of Berriew, to review the definition of terrorism. We all await his findings.

Successful law depends on a high degree of consensual support and identification with it across a wide cross-section of the population. The Muslim population of the United Kingdom is a significant part of our community: in London alone, it is 10 per cent of the population. The strength of opposition in the Muslim community to this clause would be difficult to overestimate. When the Government indicate that it is necessary to have this clause to send a signal—my noble friend Lady Ramsay, with her usual candour, has made the same point—members of the Muslim community understand this to be a signal to them, in particular. They believe that they are being warned, because of their anxieties about recent and, indeed, current events, that their views are not legitimate and should be suppressed. They may be right or they may be wrong in that, but that is the message which they interpret. This is not helping to win the most important and demanding battle of all if terrorism is to be overcome—the battle for hearts and minds.
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It has been argued that supporters of Nelson Mandela—I was one, as indeed I was of Eduardo Mondlane and others in the struggle for freedom in Mozambique, Angola and Guinea before the restoration of democracy in Portugal—would not be indicted by this clause. I simply do not understand that. After Sharpeville in 1960, the ANC abandoned non-violence and supported Spear of the Nation, its military wing committed to a strategy of sabotaging targets of economic and political importance.

The activities of Spear of the Nation would clearly have fallen foul of Section 1 of the Terrorism Act 2000. Subsection (2) refers to "serious damage to property"—a technique that was deliberately deployed. Section 1 also refers to where,


The apartheid regime denounced the struggle as terrorism. Others across the world, including, I am glad to say, some current members of the Government and Cabinet, expressed support. That support was explicit and intentional. I recall speaking in the other place on the need to relate to the liberation movements. None of the Government's amendments, covering intent, recklessness or non-endorsement, would provide protection from imprisonment under Clause 1.

There have been references to Nelson Mandela—I have made them myself—during our deliberations on this Bill. I hope that the House will therefore bear with me if I quote Nelson Mandela at his trial in 1964. He said:

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The Government argue—the Home Secretary argued it in his oral evidence to the Joint Committee on Human Rights—that while such resistance may have been justified on occasion in the past, such conditions no longer exist. After my years as rapporteur to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on the conflict in Chechnya, a country suffering grievously and which I visited nine times, I wish the world were as simple as the Home Secretary and his colleagues have portrayed it.

I believe without qualification that it is wrong and totally unacceptable to target innocent civilians, whether this be by states or non-state organisations.
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I also believe that that absolute principle demands some caution on our part about our own credibility. Just read AC Grayling's latest book, Among the Dead Cities, dealing with the area bombing of Germany and Japan, or reflect on more recent events. The deliberate targeting of the innocent is not just wrong and wicked, it is usually counter-productive, whoever does it and for whatever cause.

I do not believe that the rebels of Chechnya are right to be fighting, but I understand why many of them feel that they have no alternative. Just as I despise the atrocities against the innocent by some within their ranks, I admire the courage of others who themselves abhor such atrocities as much as any Member of this House. It would be tragic if, by our insensitivity and intransigence, we play into the hands of the extremists. Chechnya is not, by far, alone; there are other dictatorships and highly repressive regimes in the world today.

Attacks on innocent civilians are something we should all condemn, but the definitions of terrorism we are considering today are not specifically about that.

Lord Hurd of Westwell: My Lords, I intervene briefly because of what the noble Baroness, Lady Ramsay, quite rightly said—that lay people also have a right to speak in a debate that has, inevitably, been partly dominated by lawyers. As a lay person, I come to a different conclusion from the noble Baroness.

The word "glorification" appears in the Labour manifesto and in the Security Council resolution. Some of us are reasonably acquainted with both types of document, and the words are chosen carefully for the purpose of those documents. I do not think anyone drafting them has the notion that the words, as opposed to the concepts, need to or should be automatically translated into the domestic law of member states or—in the case of the Labour manifesto—of Parliament. They have a different purpose, and there is no reason why legislators should follow the wording of either of those documents.

This point has been made already, but the noble Baroness again used this phrase about sending a signal. I simply do not believe that when we discuss legislation in this Chamber or in the other place we are in the business of sending signals or messages. We are in the business of creating and defining offences. The moment we stray from that, the moment we wander into the message-giving process, we are wandering away from our proper path as legislators.

The fundamental, lay background is this: we are wrestling, and have to wrestle, to retain loyalty for this country among a number of people in this country, mostly perhaps young people, who are being tempted and seduced away from that loyalty, with consequences that can be desperate, damaging and lethal for ourselves. That is what it is about. We have three weapons. One is persuasion, another is example and the third is law. I believe that the third weapon—the weapon of law—is the most double-edged and therefore on the whole the weakest, but it is necessary.
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The law does not deal with thoughts. As Queen Elizabeth I said, in this country we do not seek to open windows into men's souls. We are not trying to search people's thoughts. That is beyond the law. Action is within the law, not just action to commit acts of terrorism, but action to incite and prepare for terrorism. The law has steadily been strengthened so that that is clear.

In the middle, between thoughts and actions, are the things we say and the things we write. The law has a place, but it should enter the middle area of words and writings on tiptoe and with caution. If the law goes too far into that area, it discredits itself and ceases to be a weapon; it becomes a boomerang. For myself, I believe that the glorification clause, even in the form it has been sent back to us by the Government, crosses that frontier. It ceases to protect and, in a way, harms the protection of the cause in which we are all united.

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