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UK terror suspects under control orders reported missing

[JURIST] Two terror suspects whose movement had been restricted under control orders [UK backgrounder; BBC backgrounder] in the UK were reported as missing Monday. One of the individuals is an Iraqi who appears to have been missing for several months, while the other suspect, a British man of Pakistani origin, escaped through the window of a mental health facility earlier this month. UK Home Office Minister Tony McNulty [official profile] said that he does not believe British citizens are at risk and responded to criticism that the public should have been informed sooner [Liberty press release] by saying everyone who had a need to know was told. The police have begun an intensive search for the two men and airports and ports have also been put on notice.

Under the Prevention of Terrorism Act 2005 [text], Britain allows control orders [JURIST report] when individuals are suspected of involvement in terrorist activities, but there is insufficient evidence to support prosecution. The orders can mandate that the suspects be confined to their homes and not have any communication with others. Earlier this year, a British court ruled [JURIST report] that control orders breach a suspect's human rights, but did not go as far to say that it is illegal for the Home Office to authorize the orders. BBC News has more.

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