Qatada appeal rejected

Judges at the European Court of Human Rights have rejected Abu Qatada's bid to have his appeal against deportation to his native Jordan heard. The radical cleric lodged the request hours after the Home Secretary announced the move last month.

Latest ITV News reports

Labour's Keith Vaz: 'We must not allow this embarrassing situation to occur again'

Keith Vaz, chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee, has made the following comments in response to the European Court of Human Rights decision to reject Abu Qatada's bid to appeal his deportation.

"The deportation of Abu Qatada is long overdue. I welcome the European Court's decision today.

"However, I am very concerned by the inability of the Home Office legal team to provide the Home Secretary with the correct legal advice.

"When the Home Secretary herself came before the House and the Home Affairs Select Committee last month she was adamant that Abu Qatada had missed the appeal deadline.

"We now know that this was incorrect. She must act swiftly to deport Abu Qatada and to review what went wrong within her legal team. We must not allow this embarrassing situation to occur again."

– Keith Vaz, chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee

Statement from Abu Qatada's lawyers on Theresa May's 'contrived political spectacle'

In a statement, Abu Qatada's lawyers Birnberg Peirce said:

"When the Secretary of State elected to rush to the Special Immigration Appeals Commission three weeks ago, claiming that all of the ills prohibiting deportation had been cured in Jordan and that Mr Othman [Abu Qatada] could be immediately deported, with the intention it seems of achieving a contrived political spectacle, she did so on a basis that was wrong factually as well as legally.

"We trust that the courts here will see the claims made by the Secretary of State in their true light, an attempt to circumvent the binding decision of the European Court on facts that have not changed, despite desperate attempts to insist otherwise."

– Abu Qatada's lawyers Birnberg Peirce

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Former government lawyer: 'big obstacle' to Abu Qatada's deportation removed

Barrister and former government legal adviser, Carl Gardner, has said of the European Court of Human Rights' decision to reject Abu Qatada's appeal :

This was the big obstacle to deportation, and I think now you would have to say it is likely in the end that although he won't be on a plane within days, Qatada will ultimately be returned to Jordan."

– Carl Gardner, barrister and former government adviser

Yvette Cooper: 'The Home Secretary should apologise' over Abu Qatada appeal deadline

The shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper
The shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper has called for Theresa May to apologise over Abu Qatada's appeal deadline expiry Credit: ITV News

The shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper has welcomed the European Court of Human Rights' decision to rejected Abu Qatada's appeal, saying "we all want him deported to Jordan to stand trial there as soon as possible."

But she added that it was "very worrying" that the Courts confirmed the Home Secretary got the appeal deadline from the court's original decision wrong.

Mrs Cooper said: "That's a major mistake that could have created a loophole and caused all kinds of problems.

"I think the Home Secretary should apologise for that and make sure lessons are learnt in the handling of such a serious case."

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Number 10 spokesman: 'We are obviously very pleased with the decision'

Prime Minister David Cameron's official spokesman has said of today's Abu Qatada ruling:

"We are obviously very pleased with the decision. It means that the case will now be heard in a British court and it is clearly our intention still to deport this man.

"We believe the assurances we have from the Jordanian government are sufficient."

Asked whether Mr Cameron was embarrassed at the court's finding that the Government got the timing of the deadline for Qatada's appeal wrong, the spokesman said:

"We had consistent legal advice on that point, which did not change."

– Prime Minister David Cameron's official spokesman

Amnesty UK: Qatada decision 'disappointing and a missed opportunity'

Kate Allen, director of Amnesty International UK, has said the European Court of Human Rights decision on Abu Qatada's appeal is "disappointing and a missed opportunity".

"The Grand Chamber would have been the right body to examine this appeal because it raises fundamental issues about whether 'deportation deals' with countries which routinely use torture should ever be relied on."

"Jordan has a known record of torturing detainees and conducting unfair trials. The simple truth is that Abu Qatada will be at personal risk of torture and of receiving an unfair trial in Jordan's State Security Court."

"When, as is now highly likely, the UK courts examine the question of whether further 'assurances' given by Jordan will guarantee him a fair trial, they need to take a cold, hard look at Jordan's record on torture and unfair trials.

If the UK authorities genuinely believe that Abu Qatada has committed a criminal offence, they should either put him on trial in this country or extradite him to a third country that can safely and fairly do so.

– Kate Allen, director of Amnesty International UK,
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