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UK anti-terror law watchdog warns on extending 28-day detention without charge limit

[JURIST] UK independent anti-terror law reviewer Lord Carlile [party profile] warned British lawmakers Thursday against "rushing" to extend the country's 28-day limit [JURIST report] on police detentions of terror suspects without charge. London Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair [official profile] suggested an extension [JURIST report] of the limit in a speech Saturday. Carlile's warning comes as UK Prime Minister Tony Blair [official profile] is gearing up to push new anti-terror legislation through parliament. Government leaders want to consolidate all emergency anti-terror laws introduced since September 11 and possibly introduce new measures, such as allowing phone-tap evidence in terror trials and banning flag burning [JURIST report].

The detention limit became contentious late last year during debate on the Terrorism Act of 2006 [Home Office backgrounder], with the prime minister suffering his first parliamentary defeat in November when the House of Commons substituted the 28-day maximum term for the government's initially-proposed 90-day limit [JURIST report]. The House of Lords later rejected a proposed 60-day "compromise" [JURIST report]. The Guardian has more.

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