UK: Reid wins battle to deport radical Muslim cleric

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Radical Muslim preacher Abu Qatada today lost his appeal against deportation from Britain.

The hardline cleric, believed to have close ties with Al-Qa’eda in Britain, will be sent back to Jordan after John Reid, the Home Secretary, won his legal battle against him.

The Special Immigration Appeals Commission (Siac) dismissed Qatada’s appeal, effectively backing the “memoranda of understanding” plank of the Government’s anti-terror policy that allows the Government to deport people to countries accused of torture by securing special agreements that deportees will not be ill treated.

Mr Reid said: “It is our firm belief that these agreements strike the right balance between allowing us to deport individuals who threaten the security of this country and safeguarding the rights of these individuals on their return. “I am very pleased that the court has confirmed this and that this procedure will enable us to meet our international obligations.”

Qatada’s legal team claimed in hearings last May that he would be in danger of torture or ill-treatment if he was deported to Jordan.

They also claimed the Government’s case against him was based on evidence extracted by torture.

Qatada, whose real name is Omar Mahmoud Mohammed Othman, came to Britain in 1993 and applied to remain indefinitely in 1998 but was arrested in October 2002.

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(Listed if other than Religion News Blog)
Telegraph, UK
Feb. 26, 2007
Sally Peck and agencies
www.telegraph.co.uk

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This post was last updated: Feb. 26, 2007