'Scrapping of Human Rights Act a threat to Good Friday Agreement' - Anderson
Renewed British Government plans to scrap the Human Rights Act are appalling and a threat to the Good Friday Agreement, Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson has said.
She was commenting after British cabinet minister Edward Argar suggested that the Human Rights Act could be repealed when Brexit is concluded.
“It is appalling that the British Government is ploughing ahead with its plans to scrap the Human Rights Act,” Martina Anderson said.
“The 1998 Act underpins the Good Friday Agreement, gives effect to the European Convention on Human Rights and gives citizens access to the European Court of Human Rights.
“Several sections of society have used the Human Rights Act and the European Court of Human Rights to protect and uphold their rights. For example, there have been numerous cases taken against the British government in which they have been found to infringe on the rights of persons with disabilities.
“This is part of an ideological crusade by the British Government to remove themselves from any means of accountability or international scrutiny. It should be rigorously opposed.”
A member of the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee, Martina Anderson added: “The Human Rights Act and the Convention have been crucial to numerous significant developments in recent times. Article Two of the Convention deals with the right to life. It is via this article that both the Hillsborough families and the Loughinisland families were able to pursue truth recovery.
“We have commissioned and made available specific legal opinion on the scrapping of the Human Rights Act. This report concludes that the scrapping of the Human Rights Act would constitute a grave threat to the Good Friday Agreement. Sinn Féin will continue to oppose any attempt by the British Government to dilute or remove human rights protections.”