I would not have thought it possible in this enlightened age that people could be locked up indefinitely without trial, but exactly that seems to be happening in the UK today. It is reminiscent of the “oubliette” – a dungeon that was only accessible through a hole in the ceiling – something that belongs to a very bad part of history.
How is it that someone could end up in this sorry state of affairs?
It really is surprisingly easy.
All you have to do, it to be charged and arrested for an offence that you didn’t commit. In due course of time, you will be duly acquitted, and can resume your life as if there had been no interruption at all, unless ….
The Americans decide that they want to charge you for the same offence, possibly with the same evidence, and apply to have you extradited. At this point, you are promptly rearrested, and the key is thrown away!
There will be no trial, no hearing, nothing!
One of the men suffering this extreme form of torture is Babar Ahmad, who has this to say:-
“Eight years without trial is like living on death row. It’s like you are living every day for a tomorrow that might or might not come. And it has been very, very difficult… Detention without trial is the most unimaginable type of psychological torture.”
There is also a video about his situation:-
Babar Ahmad and the injustice of the US/UK extradition laws
Ahmad’s case is not unique in Britain today, and its impact on others has been devastating. Men like Haroon Aswat have suffered complete breakdowns and removal to a mental hospital. And in the special unit of Long Lartin prison are other Muslim men equally affected by the long, slow failure of the system. One, Talha Ahsan from south London, is in a case linked to the same website as Ahmad. Another, Egyptian Adel Abdel Bary has gone through the same ordeal for even longer – 12 years.
Adel Abdel Bary is a Human Rights Lawyer and was for years one of Amnesty International’s sources of information. It didn’t save him!
Egypt puts British justice to shame
There is one possible glimmer of light on the horizon. The European Court of Human Rights is due to rule on this draconian British monstrosity by 10th April 2012.
God help these people if they get it wrong!