[JURIST] UK Home Secretary John Reid [official profile] said Thursday that control orders [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive] employed against persons suspected to be national threats when there is not enough evidence to hold them for trial are "far from the best option" in the fight against terrorism. He made the comment after three terror suspects subject to control orders under the Prevention of Terrorism Act [text] were reported to have fled [AP report]. The suspects are believed to have been planning attacks on British or US troops. Reid said judges and critics of the government were responsible for the lack of tougher rules to prevent disappearances and said he would introduce new anti-terror measures before he steps down from his post in June.
In March, the UK Parliament's Joint Committee on Human Rights [official website; JURIST news archive] said that control orders violate the European Convention on Human Rights [JURIST report] and should give way to actual criminal prosecutions. Control orders were first issued [JURIST report] by the Tony Blair government in 2005 and, in addition to being politically controversial, have run into repeated problems in the courts [JURIST report]. BBC News has more.