Westminster ‘increasingly antagonistic’ towards human rights, inquiry finds


THE Westminster government has adopted an “increasingly antagonistic” approach towards human rights, a European inquiry has found.

Moves by ministers to replace the Human Rights Act with a new Bill of Rights was singled out as a particular cause for alarm by the Council of Europe’s commissioner for human rights, Dunja Mijatovic, who warned such a move would weaken human rights in Britain.

Ms Mijatovic also raised concerns about the government’s series of anti-protest Bills, treatment of asylum-seekers, police strip-searching of children and the emergence of a “harsh political and public discourse” against trans people.

The 47-page report follows a four-day visit to Britain by Ms Mijatovic and her team, and comes ahead of international human rights day on Saturday.

Releasing the report yesterday, the commissioner said: “Both the overall system for protecting human rights, and the rights of specific groups, are currently under pressure in the United Kingdom (UK). The authorities should spare no effort to reverse this trend.”

Guardian: Watchdog criticises UK ministers’ ‘antagonism’ towards human rights

The UK government has “an increasingly antagonistic attitude” towards human rights that is weakening instead of strengthening protections for the public, a European inquiry has found.

Inflammatory language used by MPs and officials to describe lawyers could put their safety at risk, according to the Council of Europe’s commissioner for human rights, Dunja Mijatović.

She said the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts (PCSC) Act would have a chilling effect on the right to peaceful assembly, which would be worsened if the public order bill is adopted.

Plans to repeal the Human Rights Act and replace it with a bill of rights would weaken the rights of individuals in the UK, Mijatović said.

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