News and documentation
archive 2001-2006 (Statewatch terrorist lists site)
November 2006 - Copenhagen
International Conference (agenda). Conference on anti-terrorism
legislation, political rights and international solidarity, Saturday
18 November 2006: declaration
November 2006 - Time for justice - end the ban on Kongra
Gel (kurdmedia.com, 18.11.06). A public meeting
in the House of Commons on 15 November discussed the ban on Kongra
Gel, a Kurdish organisation committed to entirely non-violent
political change inside Turkey. Remzi Kartal, the Brussels-based
European spokesman for the banned organisation was denied permission
to enter the UK to attend the meeting.
October 2006 - EU: Advocate General calls for rejection of appeal
by Basque groups (AG Opinion in joined cases C-354/05
and C-355/05 P, 26 October 2006, link). The appeal concerns the
inclusion of Juan Mari Olano Olano, Julen Zelarain Errasti and
"Gestoras Pro Amnistía" and Araitz Zubimendi
Izaga, Aritza Galarraga and "Segi" on the EU terrorist
October 2006 - Danish group 'Rebellion' to be charged with
terrorist fund-raising (report). The Danish Minister
of Justice, Ms. Lene Espersen, decided on 11 October to follow
the advice from the national prosecutor (Rigsadvokaten), Mr.
Henning Fode, and open a case against the private association
"Oproer" for having breached the Danish anti-terror
October 2006 - Pakistan's Baluch insurgency: A sophisticated
armed fight for a provinces autonomy (Selig S Harrison,
Le Monde Diplomatique, link). Examines the history of
the Baluch independence struggle following recent troubles in
the resource rich province and the assassination of an opposition
leader in August. Ben Hayes comments:
"Barely an eyebrow was
raised when the Baluchistan Liberation Army (BLA) was proscribed
as a "terrorist organisation" by the UK government
in July 2006 [see below]. The upshot of this "quid pro quo"
- a direct reward for General Musharraf's support of the US-UK
"war on terror" - is that Britain has decreed as "terrorism"
another complex struggle against the repression of legitimate
demands for autonomy. Instead of pressing Musharraf for a political
settlement with the minorities, as some EU officials have done,
Britain and the US have backed him with political support and
October 2006 - EU: Advocate General calls for CFI ruling on
PKK to be set aside (AG Opinion in Case C-229/05 P, 27
September 2006, link). The PKK was listed as "terrorist
organisation" by the EU Council in 2002. Osman Ocalan (brother
of PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, who is imprisoned in Turkey) brought
an action against that decision on behalf of the Kurdistan Workers
Party (PKK) together with Serif Vanly, on behalf of the Kurdistan
National Congress (KNK). The EU Court of First Instance dismissed
the cases in February 2005 as inadmissible on the grounds that
Mr Ocalan was unable to prove that he represented the PKK (he
had argued that it no longer existed) and that the KNK was not
individually affected by the Councils decision to proscribe
the PKK. Both applicants lodged appeals with the Court of Justice.
In the opinion of Advocate General
Kokott, the Court of First Instance made an error of law in its
assessment of the admissibility of the PKK application. It was
incorrect to conclude from Mr Ocalans explanation that
because the PKK no longer existed that he could no longer represent
it and in so doing, the Court of First Instance distorted his
evidence. Since the Council continued to designate the PKK a
terrorist organisation, the PKK had to be entitled to bring proceedings
against its corresponding inclusion on the list. In the Advocate
Generals view, the Court of First Instance also made a
procedural error. In view of its doubts as to whether Mr Ocalan
could represent the PKK, it ought to have given him the opportunity
to clarify his power of attorney. The Advocate General proposes
that the Court should decide that Mr Ocalan is entitled to bring
proceedings on behalf of the PKK and that his application should
be referred back to the Court of First Instance for a decision
on whether it is also well founded. As far as KNK is concerned,
the Advocate General maintained that it was not affected by the
proscription of the PKK.
AG opinions are not binding on
the Court (their role is to propose, in complete independence,
a legal solution to the cases for which they are responsible)
unless they are endorsed by Judges of the Court of Justice who
are now beginning their deliberations in this case (Judgment
will be given at a later date). But if the ECJ follows the opinion
of its Advocate General the PKK will at last be able to challenge
the substance of the EU decision to designate it as "terrorist".
Kadek and Kongra-Gel, who are listed by the EU as aliases of
the PKK, will also be able to challenge their inclusion.
The Advocate General's opinion
in the appeals bought by Basque groups and individuals ("SEGI",
"Gestoras Pro Amnistía" and others) is due on
the 26 October.
July 2006 - UK: first groups to be proscribed for "glorification
of terrorism"; two new "foreign terrorist organisations"
and two PKK "aliases" will also be banned (Home
Office press release, 17.7.06, link). The Home Secretary has
drafted two "Orders in Parliament" extending its proscription
regime. The first Order will ban UK-based organisations "Al-Ghurabaa"
and the "Saved Sect", said to be "offshoots of
Al-Muhajiroun", for "glorifying terrorism". "Teyrebazen
Azadiya Kurdistan" (TAK, or the "Kurdistan Liberation
Hawks") and the "Baluchistan Liberation Army"
(BLA), based in western Pakistan, will also be proscribed under
the Order as "foreign terrorist organisations". The
second Order adds "Kongra Gele Kurdistan" and "Kadek"
to the UK "terrorist list" on the grounds that they
are "alternative names for the PKK" (both have already
been proscribed by the EU).
This is the first time the new
proscription provisions in the Terrorism Act 2006 (pdf) have been
used by the UK government. The Act allows the proscription of
"extremist" groups for "glorifying" terrorism
and extends proscription to "aliases" of organisations
already listed. The draft proscription Order is subject to approval
by both Houses of Parliament and will be debated in Parliament
at some point in the next week. The draft Order proposing alternative
names for the PKK will not be debated and will enter into force
on 14 August.
July 2006 - Two
more cases dismissed by EU Court of First Instance (EU
Court Press Release, 12.7.06, pdf). The EU Court of First Instance
has dismissed Cases T-253/02 (Chafiq Ayadi v Council of the EU)
and T-49/04 (Faraj Hassan v Council of the EU and European Commission).
Mr. Ayadi is a Tunisian national resident in Dublin while Faraj
Hassan is a Libyan national held in Brixton Prison pending extradition
to Italy. Both challenged their inclusion on the UN "terrorist
list" (of supporters of Al-Qaeda or the Taleban), which
is incorporated into EU law under Council Regulations. Both cases
were dismissed - taking the number of unsuccessful challenges
to proscription at the CFI to 8 - though there an interesting
spin was put on the rights of the individuals concerned to compel
their governments to raise questions in the Security Council.
This so-called "diplomatic remedy" is currently the
only chance of de-listing on offer to affected individuals. Lawyers
have two months to appeal to the full EU Court of Justice (5
appeals against similar CFI rulings are also pending). Ben Hayes
of Statewatch comments:
With respect, the repeated
rulings by the CFI that being listed by the UN Security Council
as a supporter or associate of Osama Bin Laden, Al Qaeda or the
Taleban "does not prevent the individuals concerned from
leading a satisfactory personal, family and social life"
is plainly wrong. In todays political climate it is hard
to think of a more serious allegation than being publicly branded
a terrorist whether by the UN, EU or national
governments never mind the crippling effect of the sanctions
themselves. The fact remains that these regimes are a recipe
for arbitrary, secretive and unjust decision-making. Unless procedures
are introduced allowing affected parties to know and challenge
the allegations against them in a court of law the terrorist
lists will continue to lack legitimacy.
See: Challenging proscription
June 2006 - ECJ Advocate General recommends rejection of
Sison appeal over access to EU documents (Opinion, 22.6.06,
link). The AG has recommended that Professor Jose Maria Sison's
appeal to the European Court of Justice against the EU Council's
decision to refuse access to the documents relating to his inclusion
on the terrorist list should be rejected.
June 2006 - Four
more proscription cases lodged at EU Court (cases T-135/06,
T-136/06, T-137/06 and T-138/06). Lawyers representing the UK-based
Sanabel Relief Agency Ltd and messrs Al-Bashir Mohammed Al-Faqih,
Ghunia Abdrabba and Taher Nasuf have lodged cases challenging
their inclusion on the UN "terrorist list" (of supporters
of Al-Qaeda or the Taleban) at the European Court of First Instance.
This takes the total number of legal challenges to the EU/UN
proscription regime to 18 (not including those cases relating
to access to the relevant EU documents).
May 2006 - Liberation
Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) added to EU terrorist list
(EU Council press release, 9974/06, 31.5.06, pdf). The formal
EU decision was taken on 29 May 2006, following earlier threats
to do so. The LTTE has already been proscribed by the UK, US
and Canada (last month, see below). Anton Balasingham, the Tamil
Tigers' chief negotiator, commented:
will invigorate the hardline [Sinhalese] elements in the south,
including those in the present Sri Lankan government urging the
military defeat of the LTTE and silence those advocating a negotiated
solution... The more the international community alienates the
LTTE, the more the LTTE will be compelled to tread a hardline
The EU declares itself "fully
committed to the peace process in Sri Lanka" and recognises
that the "upsurge in violence is not caused by the LTTE
alone". It sees no contradiction in banning the LTTE, freezing
its funds and assets and prohibiting financial support while
only "strongly urging the Sri Lankan authorities to curb
violence in Government controlled areas".
Tigers Warn Against Possible EU Ban, Inter Press Service
News Agency (link)
- Declaration by EU Presidency on
proscription of LTTE (9962/06, 31.5.06, pdf)
- Updated EU terrorist
list (OJ L 144/25, 31.1.06, pdf)
May 2006 - Briefing
on the Jose Maria Sison case (English, French, Dutch
"On Tuesday 30 May
2006 the Court of First Instance of the European Communities
will examine the legality of the antiterrorist list adopted by
the Council of the European Union in the case of Filipino professor
Jose Maria Sison. Can the Ministers of the 25 European countries
qualify a person as a terrorist and exclude him from economic
life with neither evidence nor due process? The stake is crucial
for all the defenders of fundamental rights in Europe..."
In a separate case, Sison's lawyers
have lodged an appeal against a Court of First Instance judgment
last year in which he was refused access to the documents leading
up to the decision to list him as a "terrorist". The
opinion of the Advocate General in this case is due on 22 June
2006 (see Challenging proscription)
May 2006 - Libya
removed from US list of "state sponsors of terrorism"
(US State Department press release, 15 May 2006, link). Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced
her intention to rescind Libyas designation as a state
sponsor of terrorism. The decision will take effect in 45 days
unless Congress objects.
Will Venezuela take its place? Venezuela, meanwhile, has been designated
as "Not Fully Cooperating with U.S. Anti-Terrorism Efforts",
a designation that will end all commercial arms sales to Venezuela
(US State Department, 15 May 2006, link).
April 2006 - Danish
association Oproer (Rebellion) granted permission
to appeal to Supreme Court against injunction over support for
"terrorist" groups (Statement
issued 26.4.06). The Board of Appeal of the Danish Supreme Court
has granted spokesperson of the Danish association Oproer
(Rebellion), Patrick Mac Manus, permission to appeal the confiscation
of the associations international appeal to civil society
groups to challenge the EU terrorist lists and show solidarity
with groups like FARC and the PLFP. Rebellions
international appeal was removed from the associations
homepage by order of the Copenhagen Magistrates Court on
12 August 2005. This injunction was upheld 14 October 2005 by
the High Court (see criminal charges raised against Danish association
Oproer (Rebellion)). The Danish Board of
Appeal grants permission of appeal to the Supreme Court only
in cases involving fundamental legal or constitutional principles.
The association Rebellion has argued that the confiscation
of its international appeal is in conflict with both paragraph
77 of the Danish Constitution prohibiting the re-introduction
of censorship at any time, and the European Declaration
of Human Rights, Article 10, on freedom of expression. Moreover,
the lower courts had in their injunctions merely made reference
to the terrorist list of the European Union, without
in any way assessing the legal validity of such a list in the
Danish legal system.
April 2006 - Canada adds "Tamil Tigers" to its terrorist
list (Canada National Post, 10.4.06 (link)). The new
Conservative Canadian government has proscribed the Liberation
Tigers of Tamil Eelam as a "terrorist" organisation.
Stockwell Day, the Public Safety Minister, said the move was
"long overdue'' and "sends a signal to the (Tamil)
community and right across the country that the government will
not tolerate terrorism or terrorist activities''. The Tamil Tigers
have long been proscribed in the UK and US and the EU has recently
threatened to follow suit.
February 2006 - Documents confiscated and criminal charges raised
against Danish association Oproer (Rebellion)
(Statement issued 25.2.06). Police authorities have ordered the
removal of the international appeal for solidarity with proscripted
organisations from the association Rebellion from
the web sites of a Danish parliamentary party, a left daily newspaper
and a socialist youth group. Rebellion is charged
with transferring approximately 14000 Euro to the resistance
movements FARC (Colombia) and PFLP (Palestine) in October 2004.
The second charge concerns a statement on Danish television on
1 August 2005 by a spokesperson for Rebellion, Patrick
Mac Manus, announcing that the association was in the process
of collecting further funds in support of organisations on the
EU 'terrorist list', and that it had issued an international
appeal to democratic and solidarity organisations in the European
Union urging them to similarly challenge national anti-terrorist
legislation and the EU 'terrorist list'. Both charges have been
raised personally aginst the spokesperson, Patrick Mac Manus,
and not against the association as such.
See also Raids
and arrests against solidarity organisation for "terrorist"
fund-raising (Statewatch News Online, 20.8.05).
February 2006 - Commons agree "glorification" offence
- "extremist" groups to be banned? (link: Guardian,
16.2.06) The creation of a new offence of glorifying terrorism
(by a vote of 327 to 279) will extend proscription beyond groups
accused of direct involvement in terrorist activity to groups
"extremist" groups accused of "glorifying"
terrorism. Announcing the Bill in August 2005, Tony Blair suggested
that Hizb ut-Tahrir and al-Muhajiroun were likely to banned on
February 2006 - UK Libyans listed by UN claim innocence
(link: Guardian, 9.2.06) Five men based in the Midlands in the
UK have had their assets frozen after being listed by the United
Nations security council. Three related property companies and
a Birmingham-based charity were also proscribed.
See also latest
UN list (pdf, updated 6 February 2006).
January 2006 - Norway pulls out of EU terrorist lists
(Press release: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 5.1.06). The Norwegian
government has decided it will "no longer align itself with
any other [terrorist] list than that published by the UN"
(Norway is not an EU Member State but participates in various
aspects of EU police and judicial cooperation and security policy).
The explanation is that continued participation "could cause
difficulties for Norway in its role as neutral facilitator in
"certain peace processes". Norway has facilitated negotiations
in Sri Lanka, Sudan, Guatemala and Palestine - it is the EU's
proscription of Hamas and other Palestinian groups that is most
January 2006 - Two more appeals to EU Court of Justice
The Judgment of the EU Court of First Instance in cases T-306/01
and T-315/01 of September 2005 has been appealed to the ECJ (see
cases C-402/05: Kadi v Commission and Council and C-415/05:
Yusuf and Al Barakaat International Foundation v Council).
See also CFI
Judgment of 2005.
December 2005 - EU: Addition to list of foreign terrorist groups
(EU Council press release, 23.12.05). The group "Khalistan
Zindabad Force (KZF)" was added to the list.
See also: consolidated
EU list of 45 individuals and 47 groups (Official Journal)
November 2005 - EU: Addition to list of foreign terrorist groups
(EU Council press release, 30.11.05). The group "Hizbul
Mujahideen" was added to the list.
See also: consolidated
EU list of 45 individuals and 47 groups (Official Journal)
November 2005 - Report on the criminalisation of Turkish-Kurds
in Britain (6 September 2005), by Alexander John Fitch.
Looks at how the discourse on "terrorism" has served
to criminalise marginalised communities by examining the situation
of Kurds in Britain.
October 2005 - EU: Addition to list of foreign terrorist groups
(EU Council press release, 18.10.05). The Communist Party
of the Philippines, which includes the New Peoples Army (already
listed), linked to Jose Maria Sison (who is also already listed),
was added to the list.
October 2005 - UK: 15 groups added to list of "international
terrorist organisations" (Home Office website, 14
September 2005 - EU:
First judgments in challenges to EU implementation of UN terrorist
lists (Statewatch News Online, 21.9.05). The lower
EU court, the Court of First Instance, has finally ruled in cases
T-306/01 and T-315/01, rejecting the challenges in both cases.
The applicants may appeal to the EU Court of Justice within two
August 2005 - Denmark:
Raids and arrests against solidarity organisation for "terrorist"
fund-raising (Statewatch News Online, 20.8.05).
On 9 August 2005 Patrick Mac Manus, spokesperson for the Danish
solidarity association Oproer (Rebellion) was arrested
and charged with attempting to "directly or indirectly collect
funds for a group or organisation which has the intent of committing
terrorist actions". The charge is related to a TV news interview
broadcast on 1 August in which Mr. Mac Manus announced the launch
of an international appeal by Oproer to European democratic
organisations and solidarity movements urging them to challenge
national anti-terrorism legislation and the EU "terrorist
August 2005 - UK
to extend proscription from "terrorist" to "extremist"
groups? (statement by Tony Blair, 5.08.05). The prime
minister has announced his intention to proscribe "Hizb-ut-Tahrir"
and any successor organisations to "al-Muhajiroun",
widening the scope for proscription with new legislation in the
autumn if necessary. Hizb-ut-Tahrir is a political organisation
that has been committed to non-violence for 50 years and it would
be without precedent to proscribe such an organisation. Shami
Chakrabarti, Director of Liberty, suggests it is "unwise
to emulate the banning tendencies of Middle Eastern regimes that
radicalised generations of dissenters by similar policies"
8 August 2005).
July 2005 - EU
terrorist lists extended to 13 non-EU members-states
(pdf, EU Press release, 11473/05, 29 July 2005). Bulgaria, Romania,
Turkey, Croatia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the FYR Macedonia,
Serbia and Montenegro, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, Ukraine
and Moldova are to "ensure that their national policies
conform" with the EU rules.
June 2005 - Statewatch,
the Campaign Against Criminalising Communities and the Human
Rights and Social Justice Institute launch Observatory on the
"terrorist lists" (Statewatch press release,
29 June 2005, pdf)
June 2005 - Spanish court dismisses terrorism charges against
Basque youth associations (Statewatch news online,
21 June 2005). The organisations Jarrai, Haika and Segi - all
of whom are on the EU's "terrorist" list - were accused
of membership of a terrorist organisation (ETA). The charges
June 2005 - Hizbullah appeals to UK over ban (The
Guardian (link) 13 June 2005)
June 2005 - PKK
appeals EU proscription to European Court of Justice
(pdf, EU Council doc. 9995/05, 9 June 2005)
June 2005 - Amnesty International calls for review of "terrorist"
(see AI EU report: "Human rights dissolving at the borders?
Counter-terrorism and EU criminal law", pdf, 31 May 2005,
see pp. 11-15)
May 2005 - Canada proscribes PMOI, Kahane Chai and Gulbuddin
Hekmatyar - bringing total to 38 (link to Canadian gov't
site; department of Emergency Preparedness press release, 24
April 2005 - Court
of First instance rules against Sison access to documents
Febraury 2005 - Terrorist
Designation with Regard to European and International Law: The
Case of the PMOI (pdf) Joint Opinion by Prof. Bill Bowring,
Director of Human Rights and Social Justice Research Institute,
London Metropolitan University and Prof. Douwe Korff, Professor
of International Law, London Metropolitan University.
November - Professor
Sison case on access to documents goes to court
June - EU
April - EU
December - EU
September - EU
June - EU
April - "Experts
on Fundamental Rights highly critical of EU response to 11 September"
(including the EU terrorist lists)
December - EU
October - EU
October - Campaign
launched to defend Professor Sison
September/October - "Arbitrary"
EU anti-terrorist laws tested by Swedish Young Left
June - EU
May - UK
has a dominating influence over the composition of EU's terorrist
May - Statewatch
commentary on the updating of the EU's terrorist list
April - USA
puts three Swedish citizens on UN terrorist list
January - EU
agrees first list of "terrorists"
October - Statewatch
report on draft Regulation for EU terrorist list
October - Statewatch
analysis of the UK's process of proscribing organisations under
the Terrorism Act