CAGE welcomes the news that Abu Qatada has been acquitted of terrorism offences and will be immediately released.
Asim Qureshi of CAGE [1], an advocacy group that has campaigned for the rights of Abu Qatada and others throughout the War on Terror, said: "As we inexorably march into another phase of the War on Terror, Abu Qatada's acquittal should serve to remind us of the dangers of media and government hysteria."
"It's now clear that the raft of counter-terrorism measures he was put under, the harassment of his family and his vilification were all done with little regard for the actual truth [3]. In this and many other cases the fundamental principle of innocence until proven guilty is sacrificed at the altar of propaganda and populism. We call for a public inquiry as to how our legal system was subverted and an innocent man held without charge for one of the longest periods in modern European history."
"This case has been another sad chapter in the ongoing campaign to undermine basic rights under the slogan of fighting terrorism. We have no confidence that there will be contrition by those who are in the vanguard of the movement to crystallise the two tier justice system we currently have; but we do hope that the judiciary will at long last act as a safeguard against the politicians and press barons who lead the lynch mob."
1. CAGE (formerly known as CagePrisoners) is an independent advocacy organisation that works to empower communities affected by the War on Terror and to highlight abuses of due process.
2. CAGE has been following the case of Abu Qatada for at least a decade, we have people available for interview.
3. This piece by Moazzam Begg charts Abu Qatada's life from Palestine to Britain where he was not received well:
Contact:       Mr Amandla Thomas-Johnson
Phone:         +(44) 207 377 6700
27 Old Gloucester Street

(Edited CC image courtesy of ukhomeoffice on Flickr)

(NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.)