An unprecedented attack on the Federal Attorney General, Philip Ruddock.
KAREN PERCY: Two of Australia's leading barristers have seized on the return of Guantanamo Bay detainee, Mamdouh Habib, to launch an unprecedented attack on the Federal Attorney General, Philip Ruddock.
Ian Barker and Robert Toner, both of Sydney, argue that Philip Ruddock is failing in his traditional duty by not resisting abuses of liberty at home and abroad.
The pair say that Australia's counter-terrorism legislation, which was introduced last year and allows Australia's security agencies to investigate terrorism suspects [scapegoats] without a crime being committed, are a breach of civil liberties. [human rights abuse.]
David Mark has been speaking to Robert Toner, who's also Secretary of the New South Wales Bar Association.
ROBERT TONER: It seems to us that all the legislation that's been promulgated by the Commonwealth since the commencement of the so-called war on terror [resource wars middle-east] has been designed to restrict liberties.
It's classically the sort of case that you see sometimes in countries without the liberal traditions that we have, that you empower secret agencies to spy on people, albeit that the human being in question might not in fact have committed any criminal offence at all.
Habib for instance is now back in Australia, and everybody seems to be saying, all the agencies at least, and the Opposition seem to be saying that he's going to be kept under surveillance. Why? He hasn't apparently committed a criminal offence, otherwise he would have been charged, and yet he's going to be looked at and presumably surreptitiously while he remains in liberty.
DAVID MARK: But the Government has the right to do that. [loser.]
ROBERT TONER: Well, do they? The legislation that they've passed of course permits them to do that, [no it does not.] but aren't we entitled to go about our affairs without being secretly observed by Government?
Now, if we're committing a criminal offence, of course that's a different business, or we're conspiring to commit a criminal offence, which of itself is of course a criminal offence, that's a different business. But when you're not doing anything that's illegal, why can't you do it even though the Government might disagree with what you think and what you say, without the interference of Government?
[Now if he government has and is committing criminal offences, of course that's different business. Laugh, if only this was some sort of a joke? Now take the losers in parliament to the ICC and try them for war crimes against humanity, now that is different business altogether.]
DAVID MARK: And you wrote in an article in the Sydney Morning Herald this morning usually one would expect the Attorney General to give some recognition to the presumption of innocence. You're alleging that Philip Ruddock isn't?
ROBERT TONER: Well, there seems to be a presumption of guilt on Habib's part, because even though he hasn't been charged with any criminal offence, he's still to be treated apparently like a criminal.
DAVID MARK: This is quite a serious attack on the Attorney General from some of Australia's leading counsel. What has prompted you to do this now?
ROBERT TONER: Well, huh, we've been saying it for some little time now, not just Ian Barker and myself, but the Law Council of Australia's been saying the same sort of thing, the various associations of the profession, both in New South Wales and interstate have been saying precisely the same thing.
What we're saying is really voicing the concerns that we suspect many, many lawyers have in this country and the peak bodies of the representing lawyers has in this country as well, it's just that we have the discretion at this time. I suppose it also coincides with Habib's release, so it's timely in that sense, but nonetheless it represents a view that we've been expressing for a long time now.
DAVID MARK: What are you trying to achieve?
ROBERT TONER: The so-called war on terror now seems to have as one its elements the removal of the fundamental rights which we say the war on terror itself is directed to overthrowing. It's as though we're shooting ourselves in the foot here. We're taking away the very liberties that we say are precious to us.
DAVID MARK: But in terms of the fact that you're speaking out publicly now, is this a concerted campaign against Philip Ruddock?
ROBERT TONER: No, no, no, we're not into seeing politicians overthrown, we're here to stimulate the debate and if an outcome of it is that Ruddock changes his mind, the happier we'll be.
KAREN PERCY: That's Senior counsel, Robert Toner, Secretary of the New South Wales Bar Association, talking to David Mark.
And The World Today did try to talk to the Federal Attorney General, but his office said Mr Ruddock was on a plane and unavailable?
HoWARd sunk and dead in the water
Since the neo-Liberal fascist's kicked Mark Latham out using the 'power,' and after they stamped on his head to make sure he stayed out, John HoWARd's Coalition and his media empire have maintained its mandate.
By Just Us 1 February 05
Aust Community criticises Govt for 'crimes'!
Australia: The Law Council of Australia is warning that the Federal Government must learn from its mistakes over Guantanamo Bay? Now that's a mistake!
Australian Govt Guilty of Crimes: Community
Australia: The community says federal fascists who allowed the torture of its citizenry including Mamdouh Habib may be arrested when the United Nations War Crimes Tribunal address the War Crimes Indictment set out by the community.
What they did to Habib
Mamdouh Habib was the victim of atrocities fit for a concentration camp, including being tied to the ground while a prostitute menstruated on him, his lawyer said yesterday.
Govt accused of delaying Habib's repatriation
The Australian lawyer for Guantanamo Bay detainee Mamdouh Habib says his client's repatriation is being delayed by the Federal Government.
US judge dismisses? Guantanamo legal challenge
A US federal judge has dismissed the cases of seven Guantanamo Bay prisoners who sought to challenge the lawfulness of their continued detention?
US 'landlord' slams! Guantanamo 'law violations'
Cuba has demanded that the United States cease its "criminal conduct" in abusing prisoners held at the base it illegally occupies on Cuba's south-eastern tip, saying procedures at Guantanamo violate international law.
Concern over ramifications of Hicks FOI failure
There are claims that a decision by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal will give some countries the opportunity to refuse diplomatic aid to detained Australians.
FBI emails reveal Guantanamo abuse
In memos over a two year period FBI agents said they witnessed the use of torture techniques, which included the use of dogs, prisoners being shackled to the floor in foetal positions for up to 24 hours, left without food and water, left to defecate upon themselves.
Hicks alleges Guantanamo abuse: report
Guantanamo Bay prisoner David Hicks has reportedly claimed that prisoners at the US run prison camp have been beaten while blindfolded and handcuffed, terrorised by attack dogs, and forced to take drugs.
US lawyer wants inquiry into Hicks trial process
The lawyer defending Australian terror suspect [scapegoat for resource wars] David Hicks has called for an inquiry into whether the military commission hearing the case meets legal standards.
Australia Sells Its Citizens Short
Australian citizens, Mamdouth Habib and David Hicks have been illegally incarcerated in the Guantanamo Bay facility established by the US military as part of the War on Terror.
Downer won't press US for 'torture' report?
The Australian Government says it has tried and failed so far to get a copy of a report by the International Red Cross which claims psychological and physical coercion of detainees at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba?
UK minister criticises US over Guantanamo!
UK: Washington's policy on the legal status of detainees at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp in Cuba is unacceptable, a senior British minister said.
Lawyers hail 'unlawful' ruling in Guantanamo trial
Human rights groups and lawyers for Guantanamo detainees have welcomed a US federal judge's ruling which halted as unlawful the military tribunal trial of a Guantanamo prisoner accused of being Osama bin Laden's bodyguard and driver.
Hicks's lawyers seek panel decision
Lawyers for Australian Guantanamo Bay detainee David Hicks will make another attempt to dismiss charges against their client in a series of motions hearings starting in Cuba today.
Torture, the British way
Great to be British, isn't it? Time was, we were really uptight, but now we can talk about anything - sex, religion, politics. No matter how personal and complex the subject, we'll discuss it with Richard and Judy, or slap our private Polaroids of it on our websites. Which leaves me puzzled about our silence, even shyness, over this whole torture thing.
US secretly moved prisoners out of Iraq for questioning: report
The CIA has secretly transferred detainees out of Iraq for interrogation after asking the US Justice Department to write a memo justifying the practice, which violates the Geneva Conventions.
Pentagon dumps Guantanamo tribunal officers
The Pentagon has dumped three members of a military tribunal that will hear the trials of Guantanamo prisoners, including Australian David Hicks, but kept the presiding officer despite challenges to his impartiality.
Guantanamo detainees win right for private meetings
In a defeat for the US Government, a federal judge has ruled that three prisoners held at the naval base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba can meet with their attorneys in private. In a defeat.
Lawyers complain about Guantanamo trials
US: Lawyers for 63 detainees at the US detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba have complained before a US federal court at the slow pace their cases are being handled by authorities.
Judge orders US to release Guantanamo records
The United States Government must release documents within 30 days relating to the treatment of prisoners held at American overseas detention centres, including Guantanamo Bay and Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison, a US federal judge ordered.
Bush team 'knew of abuse' at Guantanamo
Evidence of prisoner abuse and possible war crimes at Guantanamo Bay reached the highest levels of the Bush administration as early as autumn 2002, but Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, chose to do nothing about it, according to a new investigation.
Hicks, Habib denied a fair go: Amnesty
The secretary-general of Amnesty International has criticised the Federal Government's treatment of the two Australians detained at Guantanamo Bay.
Govt's Hicks concerns an 'election stunt', says Brown
Greens Senator Bob Brown has accused the Federal Government of an election stunt with its questions to the United States authorities about the trial of "Australian Citizen" David Hicks.
Abu Ghraib inquiry slams Aust Government
A US inquiry into the Iraqi prison abuse scandal has been highly critical of Australian, Major George O'Kane, for glossing over early warnings about the treatment of detainees.
Australian Federal Government complicity in war crimes
Complaint to Australian law officers about Australian Federal Government complicity in war crimes.
Hicks family arrives at Kangaroo Caught
Terry Hicks says he feels very emotional about seeing his son for the first time in five years.
Habib's call renews welfare concerns
Waiting: Maha Habib has spoken to her husband for the first time in two-and-a-half years.
Hicks defence team likely to gain more time
The head of the military trials planned for two Australians held at Guantanamo Bay says he believes their defence teams will be given whatever additional time they need to prepare for trial.
Hicks, Habib denied natural justice: Liberal MP
A federal Liberal MP has accused the Government of not doing enough to secure a fair trial for Guantanamo Bay detainees, David Hicks and Mamdouh Habib.
Guantanamo abuse claims prompt new inquiry calls
New claims of abuse at Guantanamo Bay Cuba have prompted fresh calls for an Australian inquiry into the treatment of detainees David Hicks and Mamdouh Habib.
Mamdouh Habib: Taunted and Tortured!
Habib came to ASIO's notice when he fell out with the ADF obviously someone had it in for Mamdouh and the ADF tipped off ASIO and the AFP to taunt him. By the sounds of it he was declared a wog. That's Aussie slang for get the bastard he's not one of ours and we can discriminate against him he is an easy target. Aussie race hate!
Howard rejects spy agency overhaul
Prime Minister John Howard has played down the need for a major overhaul of Australia's spy agencies as a result of an inquiry by former intelligence officer Phillip Flood.
Habib to face US military trial
The United States Government has given the go-ahead for the Australian Guantanamo Bay inmate, Mamdouh Habib, to go to trial for being innocent. Mr Habib could now be granted access to a military and civilian legal team.
US tortured Habib in Egypt: report
Australian terror suspect Mamdoub Habib was allegedly tortured in Egypt before being sent to Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, according to the Pakistani Government.
Hicks movie to premiere in Adelaide
A movie about Guantanamo Bay detainee David Hicks, President versus David Hicks, by award winning filmmaker Curtis Levy will be screened in Adelaide tomorrow.
There is no justification for torture
In the weeks since the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison were revealed, evidence continues to seep out of similar mistreatment of prisoners in other US military detention centers in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Guantanamo Bay.
US lawyers demand access to Habib
Lawyers for Guantanamo Bay detainees, including Mamdouh Habib, have written to United States Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld demanding access to the men.
Guantanamo prisoners may be moved to US soil
The US authorities may move hundreds of prisoners from their controversial Guantanamo Bay detention camp in Cuba to the United States following new Supreme Court rulings, the Los Angeles Times has reported.
Govt urged to seek civil lawyer for Habib
The Law Council of Australia has called for the Federal Government to ensure Guantanamo Bay inmate Mamdouh Habib has access to a civil lawyer.
Pentagon names tribunal for Hicks trial
The Pentagon has named the officers who will decide the fate of David Hicks and two other Guantanamo prisoners charged by the United States in the first US military tribunals since World War II.
US terror suspects can challenge detention
The US Supreme Court has ruled that US courts have jurisdiction to hear appeals from foreign detainees held as enemy combatants in the US military base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Hicks lawyer praises Guantanamo decision
The lawyer for an Australian man detained at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base has welcomed a US Supreme Court ruling permitting judicial appeals from foreign detainees held as enemy combatants.
Hicks and Habib in the Melting Pot
Australia: The United States has brought three criminal charges against Australian David Hicks, accusing him of conspiracy to commit war crimes, attempted murder and aiding the enemy, the Pentagon has said.
Rumsfeld had approved abuse
US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld authorised hoods, the stripping of prisoners and the use of dogs to terrify inmates at Guantanamo Bay almost two years ago, documents released yesterday revealed.
How much is that doggy in the prison? Woof woof!
Did the Iraqi prisoner's get their rations while they were treated like chums?
Failure to condemn prison abuse risks lives: Kenny
The Prime Minister is morally bankrupt stay "alert and alarmed"
Prisoner's identity concealed to prevent Red Cross access
US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, acting at the request of the CIA, ordered that a suspected Iraqi insurgent leader be detained off the books to conceal his identity from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the Pentagon has confirmed.
US has secret prisons: rights group
The United States is holding terrorism suspects in more than two dozen detention centres worldwide, about half of which operate in total secrecy, according to a new human rights report.
This won't hurt much
For some time now, I've been trying to find out where my son goes after choir practice. He simply refuses to tell me. He says it's no business of mine where he goes after choir practice and it's a free country.
Govt, police 'let off the hook' Haneef inquiry
8 years ago