Wow. Given how often we hear security used to justify trampling of human rights and civil liberties in the U.S., this court opinion out of the U.K. is refreshing. Francis Gibb of The Times reports:
Ministers’ efforts to combat terrorism were dealt a fresh blow today when the UK’s highest court quashed measures to freeze the assets of terror suspects imposed without the approval of Parliament.
In a landmark ruling, seven justices of the Supreme Court ruled that Ministers had acted without Parliamentary authority in making two orders that placed sweeping financial restrictions on the five suspects.
In a devastating critique the judges variously condemned the orders as “Draconian”, “oppressive” and “paralysing”: Lord Hope of Craighead, the court’s Deputy President, said that those affected were “effectively prisoners of the state”.
He added: “Even in the face of the threat of international terrorism, the safety of the people is not the supreme law.
Read more in The Times.