Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan has roundly condemned the British Government’s so-called “Legacy” Bill during a debate in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.
Senator Gavan was speaking during a debate in the parliament on British reform of its human rights legislation.
The well-attended sitting saw critical contributions on the British Government’s legislative plans from a wide number of member states.
The parliament then voted overwhelmingly in favour of a report calling on the British Government to ensure that it did not pass legislation that could place Britain in breach of its international obligations with regard to human rights.
Leading the debate for the United European Left Group, Senator Gavan said:
“This Bill of Shame would, uniquely in the world, and against all principles of domestic and international law close down all routes to justice for people bereaved during the conflict.
“There is not one single political party anywhere in Ireland that supports this atrocious Bill, and it should be scrapped without further delay.
“I urge the British delegation to listen to the concerns of families, civil society groups and politicians from all parties, citing the dangers that the Bill poses to the human rights protections as set out in the Good Friday Agreement.”
Senator Gavan also called on the British Government to halt its Illegal Immigration Bill.
“Anyone who arrives into Britain irregularly seeking refuge or sanctuary from war, oppression or climate disaster will have their right to seek asylum deemed ‘inadmissible’.
“Human beings could be detained indefinitely and then removed either to their own country or a so-called ‘safe third country’ i.e. Rwanda.
“This flies in the face of the European Convention of Human Rights and every value of the Council of Europe. This Bill is a badge of shame for Britain amongst the international community.”