» Thursday, May 11, 2006

Human Rights

Asked about Dr. Reid's recent statement about the Afghan hijackers, and did it reflect anything that was said in Cabinet and was there going to be anything done about it, the Prime Minister's Official Spokesman (PMOS) said that what we could do about it was appeal, as we had done. That was why, as people would expect, the PMOS could not comment further on what Dr. Reid had said about the particular case. In general terms, however, the PMOS pointed journalists back to what the Prime Minister had said at the press conference, which was that if someone had committed a serious offence as a foreigner, then the belief that the public would have was that they should not be able to stay in Britain. In this particular case, since we were going to appeal, the PMOS could not comment any further.

Briefing took place at 11:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)


Asked if he could confirm claims that there were 900 terror suspects in the UK, the PMOS said that we never speculated on the precise numbers of suspects. All we had said was that there were many, but he didn't want to get into the numbers game.

Briefing took place at 11:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

John Hutton-Pensions

Asked if John Hutton was "frozen out" of this morning's meetings and kept in an anti-room in Downing Street after being told he was not required, as was reported in the Evening Standard tonight, and did he assert that the Turner Report be delivered in full to give the Prime Minister victory, the PMOS said that he was not going to give a running commentary on the discussions on pensions. The time to talk about that was when the final decisions were announced. As people knew, we did give a welcome to the Turner Report and that remained the case. Regarding John Hutton, the PMOS said that the analysis contained in the Evening Standard was wrong. Mr. Hutton was an integral part of the discussions on pensions, and was an integral part of the decision-making process. As was his right as the DWP Secretary of State, he had done a lot of very good work in shaping our response to the Turner Report.

Briefing took place at 11:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

Afghan Hijackers

Put to him that the Prime Minister had said after the 7/7 bombing that should legal obstacles arise, the Government would legislate further including amending the human rights act in respect of the interpretation of the European Convention on Human Rights and asked if there had been thought given to amending the Human Rights Act in relation to deportations, the PMOS said that firstly, as had been indicated by Tony McNulty last night, the Home Office were thinking about appealing on the case of the Afghan hijackers so he had to be careful what he said. There seemed to a misinterpretation about whether the Human Rights Act or the ECHR applied in these cases.

Briefing took place at 11:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

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