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UK court rules failure to equip troops properly may violate their rights

[JURIST] Sending British soldiers on patrol or into combat with inadequate equipment could be a violation of their human rights, the High Court of Justice ruled in London Friday. The British Ministry of Defence [official website] had argued that the Human Rights Act [text] does not apply to soldiers on active service abroad outside bases under British military jurisdiction, but Lord Justice Lawrence Antony Collins [University of London profile] ruled that British service members are entitled to legal protection of their human rights "wherever they may be."

Collins also rejected a bid by UK Defence Secretary Des Browne [official website] to gag coroners in military inquests, which would have barred them from using phrases such as "serious failure" when describing a soldier's cause of death as it might open the government to civil liability. The Telegraph has more.

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