Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

What Next for Gaza? Lasting Ceasefire Agreed After 50 Days of War

Read more

FOCUS

Video: Milan is starting point for Syrian refugees’ European odyssey

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Terrorist ransoms: Should governments pay up for hostages?

Read more

ENCORE!

Kristen Stewart and Juliette Binoche star in 'Clouds of Sils Maria'

Read more

WEB NEWS

India: journalist launches "Rice Bucket Challenge"

Read more

WEB NEWS

Russian aid convoy: Mission accomplished?

Read more

WEB NEWS

Actor Orlando Jones lauches 'Bullet Bucket Challenge'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Macron Economics'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Macron-economics, the former banker turned minister

Read more

  • French unemployment rises 0.8% in July to record high

    Read more

  • UN probe accuses Syrian regime, Islamists of ‘crimes against humanity’

    Read more

  • France’s Hollande puts young ex-banker in top economy post

    Read more

  • Video: Iraq’s Yazidis flee to spiritual capital of Lalish

    Read more

  • Video: Milan is starting point for Syrian refugees’ European odyssey

    Read more

  • Airstrikes and Assad - Obama’s military conundrum in Syria

    Read more

  • IMF’s Lagarde investigated in French corruption case

    Read more

  • American journalist held captive in Syria arrives in US

    Read more

  • In pictures: The ministers in France's new government

    Read more

  • 'Lasting' ceasefire agreed for Gaza, Abbas says

    Read more

  • Far-right ‘Russian Jihad’ fighters cross into Ukraine

    Read more

  • American 'Islamic State fighter' killed in Syria

    Read more

  • Rebels 'shoot down' UN helicopter in South Sudan

    Read more

  • Air France pilots threaten September strike

    Read more

  • WHO seeks stricter regulation for e-cigarettes

    Read more

Europe

Radical cleric Hamza wins appeal to retain British passport

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-11-05

Jailed radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza has won an appeal against government attempts to strip him of his British passport, after a special tribunal agreed he risked being left "stateless".

REUTERS - Jailed radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza won his appeal against the government’s attempts to strip him of his British passport on Friday after a special tribunal agreed he risked being left stateless.

Lawyers for the 52-year-old, who has a hook in place of a missing hand, had argued during last month’s tribunal that he had already had his Egyptian citizenship taken away and that to take his British passport too would render him stateless.

But the Home Office said there was no documentation to prove he was no longer an Egyptian national.

The Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC) in London allowed his appeal in a 12-page ruling, the Press Association reported.

“We are satisfied on balance of probabilities that if a deprivation order were to be made, the appellant (Hamza) would be made stateless,” Mr Justice Mitting ruled.

Egyptian-born Hamza was jailed for seven years in 2006 over sermons he gave from his London mosque that advocated the killing of Jews and other non-Muslims.

He is currently in Belmarsh Prison challenging attempts to extradite him to the United States.

He is wanted on charges of trying to set up an al Qaeda camp and of involvement in plotting the seizure of 16 Western hostages in Yemen in 1998.

A Downing Street spokeswoman said Prime Minister David Cameron was “disappointed” with the decision but that it would not affect the ongoing extradition proceedings.

Attempts to take his passport away were launched by the British government in 2003 but delayed by other legal action against him.

The commission heard Hamza may have had his Egyptian nationality revoked but the country’s government would not confirm whether he had or not.

The cleric came to Britain on a student visa and acquired a British passport through marriage.

He was denied an Egyptian passport in 1982 because he had not undertaken military service, the panel heard, but a decree in 1988 allowed him his citizenship back.

But Egyptian law expert Sabah Al-Mukhtar, appearing as a witness for Hamza’s legal team, told the commission Hamza may have been stripped of his nationality later for other reasons.

He said his interpretation of Egyptian nationality law was that if an Egyptian obtained a foreign nationality without permission, they would be stripped of their Egyptian citizenship.

But James Strachan, for the Home Office, said: “The 1988 decree demonstrates conclusively that in fact the appellant was granted permission to obtain British nationality and to retain his Egyptian nationality.”

Date created : 2010-11-05

COMMENT(S)