March 16, 2020

Commonwealth tells Lanka to consider consequences

Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma has urged the Sri Lankan Government to pause for further careful consideration following the passage by the country’s Parliament of the impeachment motion against the Chief Justice of Sri Lanka.“The impeachment of a Chief Justice is a very serious matter. In this particular case, it has called into question aspects of the Constitution of Sri Lanka,” he said in a statement. Sharma says he has been in touch with the Sri Lankan Government at the highest levels to offer Commonwealth assistance to find a way forward.“I recognise that this is a matter for Sri Lanka, but am also conscious of our shared Commonwealth values and principles, to which Sri Lanka and all member governments have subscribed,” the Secretary-General said. “I strongly urge that time be taken to reflect and consider fully the constitutional and other ramifications of the differing positions taken by the Judiciary and Legislature before any decision is taken by the Executive on the impeachment of the Chief Justice. Meanwhile the United Kingdom called on the government to respect democratic principles and safeguard the Chief Justice and Legal Profession.Commenting on the Sri Lankan Parliament’s vote to impeach the Chief Justice, a Foreign Office spokesperson said:“The British Government is deeply concerned by the impeachment proceedings against Sri Lanka’s Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake. We share the concerns already expressed by many people in Sri Lanka over both the process and related reports of the intimidation of members of the Sri Lankan Bar Association. The motion to impeach the Chief Justice runs contrary to the clear rulings of Sri Lanka’s highest courts and the proceedings appear to contravene basic principles of fairness, due process and respect for the independence of the judiciary and the Commonwealth Latimer House Principles. He said that the Commonwealth, collectively, is profoundly concerned about this situation. “Together with our international partners, we call on the Sri Lankan Government to respect democratic principles and the right to peaceful protest and to ensure the continued safety of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake.” read more

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Isil fanatic emailed the PMs office threatening to wage jihad before getting job

first_imgThe jihadist sent the Prime Minister’s office an email titled “terrorist Israel” in July 2014. It read: “Something needs to be done to stop Israel or we Muslims will get our revenge. We will wage jihad and slaughter every Israeli and their allies.”The following month Ahmed began working as a security guard on London’s Crossrail project through a security firm.He sent further threatening emails to the Australian government, Ofsted and a Sun journalist, warning: “May the British child burning soldiers burn in hell… cowards piss on their graves.”In November 2014 the Islamist bought a £220 flight to Istanbul, but changed his mind and cancelled the trip.Mr Weekes said by this time he “was sending links to videos that appeared to be supportive of the Islamic State group to contacts in his WhatsApp group”.After Ahmed was arrested a probation officer told him that Islam was a “peaceful and respectful” religion, but he replied: “No. It is a religion of war.” Questions will be raised about why Ahmed wasn’t charged earlier after he ‘became increasingly radicalised in his Islamic faith’ as he grew up in east London.He bought an Islamic State flag and camouflage gear with his PayPal account between February and July 2014. An Islamic State fanatic emailed the Prime Minister’s office threatening to “wage jihad” before being given a job guarding the Crossrail project, a court heard today.Shamim Ahmed, 24, who once threatened to blow up a bookshop for selling the Charlie Hebdo magazine, wagged his finger at Judge John Bevan QC and warned him: “Give me 20 years, I will come out the enemy.”Ahmed had sent death threats to staff at The French Bookshop in South Kensington on January 17, 2015 with the subheading: “Protect your neck while you are still alive.”The former security guard accused the bookshop of selling the satirical magazine “against Muslims” just days after the massacre and said they would face ‘major retaliation’ if they continued to stock it.He then made two threatening phone calls to the shop on 22 January, telling the owner: “I’m going to come and stab you, I’m going to come right away and blow up the shop: I’m not afraid of the police, I’m a Muslim.” Shamim Ahmed was caught on the Syrian border and returned to the UK But just two months later in January last year, jobless Ahmed was caught on the Syrian border trying to cross into IS-controlled territory. He travelled to Turkey but was returned to the UK after officials detained him at the Syrian border, believing he was trying to cross into the war-torn country.Ahmed was arrested on January 16 and admitted engaging in conduct in preparation of terrorist acts.At his sentencing hearing on Wednesday he began wagging his finger and mumbling “kuffar'”as he was sentenced before telling a dock officer: “Move the f–k out of my face. I’m going to punch you in the face.”Ahmed was sent back to the cells after shouting: “Wage jihad wherever we are… Target the civilians, tourist sites, tourist sites, inshallah [God willing].”Judge John Bevan QC said: “The defendant originally refused to have anything to do with the court process.”This afternoon I would have hoped he would have been on his best behaviour, he wasn’t, and I have asked for him to be removed and will continue in his absence.”Ahmed, previously of Shadwell, east London, was later jailed for six years in absence.Opening the case against terrorist Shamim Ahmed, prosecutor Mark Weekes said: “The case against the defendant is that in early January 2016 he travelled out to Turkey from the UK, and it’s quite plain from the facts his ultimate destination from where he was turned back was Syria, with the intention of fighting for Islamic State.” Shamim Ahmed was caught on the Syrian border and returned to the UKCredit: Greg Wilford It followed the massacre of twelve people during a raid on the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris on 7 January, 2015.Ahmed, who has previously stated that he only recognises Sharia law, admitted two charges of sending malicious communications in November 2015 and was given a 20-week suspended sentence. He was also ordered to perform 300 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay £1680 in fines and costs. He said he wanted to go to Syria to meet girls from and live under sharia law.Jailing him, Judge Bevan said: “He doesn’t approve of democracy, he doesn’t approve of women, and he says democracy is evil and no good. So his radicalisation is long-term, if not particularly sophisticated. He lied his head off to the probation service and police.”His views show no sign of calming down, he’s a long-term follower of jihad.”Ahmed, previously of Shadwell, east London, was deemed an “offender of particular concern” and must serve one year on licence when he is released. He must also abide by a notification order for 15 years. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

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