Thursday, October 16, 2003

Ahmed Zaoui Update

Ahmed Zaoui has finally been released from solitary confinement and moved to a remand facility. This is an improvement (and where he should have been all along), but he is still being held without charge, and the government seems to be in no hurry to reach a decision.

The bad news is that the Inspector-General of Security and Intelligence will not be releasing any evidence to Zaoui's lawyers, and will not be considering human rights (such as the right to a fair trial, or the right to face your accusers, or to properly defend yourself in a court?) in making his decision. This is yet another outrage - secret courts where defendents cannot view the evidence against them are a hallmark of shitty despotisms - but fairly typical of the SIS's behaviour in this matter. If their previous "evidence" is anything to go by, secrecy is probably the only way they can prevent the case collpasing into farce.

NZpundit thinks that the Inspector-General should brief parliamentary leaders, so they can reassure the public that everything is above board. Fuck that - it's not the role of politicians to make those kinds of decisions. The proper place for reviewing evidence is in a court, before a judge. Anything else is a betrayl of the principles this country is supposed to stand for.