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UK Conservative leader calls for Human Rights Act repeal

[JURIST] UK Conservative Party leader David Cameron [official website; party profile] on Friday demanded a repeal or revision of the 1998 Human Rights Act [text] following a High Court decision to allow nine Afghani airplane hijackers to remain in the United Kingdom rather than deport the convicts back to Afghanistan for fear they would be tortured in their home country. UK Home Secretary John Reid [official profile] announced yesterday that the government will appeal the asylum decision [JURIST report], which was based on the judge's reading of the Human Rights Act. Prime Minister Tony Blair has also called the ruling into question.

Cameron reiterated a pledge contained in the 2005 Conservative Party Manifesto [text] to repeal the act if a rewrite doesn't cure the government's inability to effectively deal with criminals. Britain has drafted deportation agreements with states such as Lebanon and Jordan [JURIST reports] where the receiving nations promise not to torture the deportees, but UN torture experts have criticized the agreements [JURIST report] as circumventing the Convention Against Torture [text], to which Britain is a signatory. The Telegraph has more.

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