Monday 13 February 2023

Applying the same rules to all


One of the ever-increasing number of living former Conservative leaders, Iain Duncan Smith, has called for a Chinese official to be arrested and detained pending prosecution for human rights abuses, if he should set foot in the UK. Apart from the diplomatic niceties involved in detaining officials of foreign governments (however repulsive they might be considered to be) and especially so in the case of one of the world’s superpowers, it is a core principle of English law that any accused person is innocent until proven guilty. The evidence is strong in this case, but until found guilty by a properly-convened court of law, there has to be a presumption of innocence, and the offences have to be ‘alleged’ or ‘suspected’ in the meantime. I find myself wondering whether this beknighted individual has really thought through the consequences of his suggestion. If other countries adopted the same approach, wouldn’t that make some members of the current UK parliament subject to summary arrest and detention every time they set foot in another country? Apart from current court cases challenging whether existing plans conform to human rights agreements and treaties, there is clear evidence – not least from their own statements – that members of the government are actively planning to abrogate the UK’s duties and responsibilities in respect of human rights. Duncan Smith’s proposal might have some merit, especially if we could persuade him to take a nice little trip to somewhere which applies the approach he is proposing.

1 comment:

dafis said...

China presents a great opportunity for likes of IDS to engage in his own type of virtue signaling. Very noble of him to point a finger at some rogue when there is no chance of said rogue being brought before a court in the UK. Perhaps he should be a touch more robust in his view of politicians within the LondonUK orbit who have accepted big bribes from the Chinese, or ministers who have played fast and loose with their tax affairs.