Terrorism Bill — Extension Of Period Of Detention to 28 Days — but not 60 — 9 Nov 2005 at 16:39


The following policies have selected this division. You can use this to help you work out the meaning of the vote. Or list all policies.

PolicyVote (in this division)
Terrorism laws - Against (provisional)abstain
Pro-Liberty (provisional)no
Common Sense Party (provisional)aye
No detention without charge or trialabstain
Pro-human rights, pro-democracy (provisional)no
Labour's Terrorism laws - Forabstain

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The majority of MPs voted to change the revision of the period of detention without charge for terrorist suspects from 14 days to "three months", to "28 days" instead.[1]

The previous vote[2] was against restating "three months" as "90 days", which would have ended the winner-takes-all voting procedure.

Had this current vote been lost, the next voted would been about changing the plan to "60 days".

Some people called this a Dutch auction. However, it's worse than that because the time periods were not presented in an appropriate order, and those who wanted a shorter time limit were compelled to vote for the 28 days after rejecting the 90 day limit for fear that the 60 day limit would have stuck.

(A case where the provisions were presented in the correct order and voted on like a real auction can be seen on 20 May 2008 in relation to the Termination of pregnancy.)

The original powers of the police to detain terrorist suspects -- without stating the charges against the person -- for longer than other criminal acts (still limited to 48 hours) was established by the Terrorism Act 2000 and set to 7 days.[3]

This was later doubled to 14 days by the Criminal Justice Act 2003[4] following a debate without a vote.[5]

The current extention to 28 days requires annual renewal,[6] which was granted following a debate without a vote,[7] and is scheduled to be renewed a second time in July 2008.[8]

Debate in Parliament | Source |

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