The Joint Committee on Human Rights today announces its intention to hold an inquiry into the proposals set out in the Government’s recent Green Paper on Justice and Security early in the new year. The Chair of the Joint Committee, Dr Hywel Francis MP, has today written to the Justice Secretary, the Rt Hon. Kenneth Clarke QC MP, setting out some of the areas where the Committee is seeking more information from the Government on human rights impacts than the Green Paper contains.
Dr Hywel Francis MP, Chair of the Committee, said:
“This Green Paper raises some distinct and important human rights concerns. Extending the use of secret evidence, as proposed, will require a compelling justification if it is to be compatible with our common law tradition of open justice and fairness and our international treaty obligations. We have today written to the Justice Secretary seeking some further information; and we will be looking to take evidence from the Government and others in the New Year. The legislation that will follow on from these proposals in this Green Paper could have very significant implications which we must help inform Parliament about.”
The Committee plans to issue a formal Call for Evidence in a few weeks time. A copy of the Committee’s letter to the Justice Secretary is available on the Committee’s website: www.parliament.uk/jchr