23 Jul 2003
The Muslim Council of Britain regards the US decision to waive its capital punishment statutes against the first two Britons due to face a military tribunal, as reported in today’s newspapers, as wholly insufficient.
“The nine Britons and two British residents that have now been detained at Camp Delta in Guantanamo Bay, many of them for over 18 months now, must be repatriated to the UK to face any charges. We simply do not believe that they can face a fair trial in the United States especially after the US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld described them as being ‘among the most dangerous, best-trained, vicious killers on the face of the earth’. President Bush has also expressed similar sentiments in public. These comments which have received wide publicity can only prejudice any trial in the United States,” said Mr Iqbal Sacranie, Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Britain.
The MCB has repeatedly raised the issue of the British detainees at Camp Delta with the Foreign Office and other government officials. The MCB is especially concerned at reports that the British government has agreed to the US holding the military tribunals because the ‘evidence’ the United States possesses against the detainees would not withstand the scrutiny of British courts.
“It seems our government is quite prepared to see a miscarriage of justice take place against our citizens in the United States rather than to risk them coming home to face a fair trial in our own country,” said Mr Sacranie.[Ends]