Session 2008-09, 24 February 2009

Press Notice

Letter to Rt Hon the Baroness Scotland of Asthal QC from Chair of the Home Affairs Committee Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP

Home Affairs Committee writes to Attorney General on allegations of UK officials' involvement in torture

The Home Affairs Committee has today written to the Attorney General to demand that a timetable is set on her considerations on whether or not there should be a criminal investigation into the alleged torture of Binyam Mohamed. The Committee considered that four months was a very long time for consideration and has asked for a timetable to be set.

24 February 2009

As you are aware, Mr Binyam Mohammed has arrived back in the UK, having been released by the authorities in the United States. Mr Mohammed has made very serious allegations that he was tortured while in detention, and that British officials were complicit in that torture.

We understand that on 23 October the Home Secretary asked you to consider whether the police should be invited to investigate the possible involvement of British officials in this affair.

It is now four months since that referral, and the Home Affairs Committee is concerned that you have not yet been able to make a decision about a police investigation.

We urge you to bring this serious issue to an expeditious conclusion, and we would be grateful if you would supply us with an indication of when you expect to make a decision.

Yours sincerely,

Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP