British human rights defended

Blind justiceThe Director of Public Prosecutions in the UK has underscored the need to keep the Human Rights Act without changing it.

Kier Starmer, who heads the Crown Prosecution Service, said it “would be a retrograde step to amend or repeal the Human Rights Act”, thus rejecting criticism of the law made by Conservative ministers.

The Act adopted into law in the UK the provisions of the European Convention on Human Rights.

That Convention was drawn up in post-war Europe as a result of the trampling of fundamental freedoms in much of Europe during the first half of the 20th century.

But more recently it has been invoked by non-British criminals and terrorists attempting to avoid being deported.

Many Conservatives have threatened to replace the Human Rights Act and create a British Bill of Rights instead.

Some ministers, including Home Secretary Theresa May and Justice Secretary Chris Grayling, have wanted to drop the Convention altogether. Mrs May signalled at the Conservative Party conference that the Tories would repeal the act if re-elected in 2015.

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