Writing in The Telegraph on Thursday, the MP for Fareham, near Hampshire, said such a bill must “circumvent the lengthy process of further domestic litigation” and “exclude all avenues of legal challenge” such as the ECHR, “entirety” of the Human Rights Act and the Refugee Convention.
For those unfamiliar with the ECHR, it covers just a few minor and inconvenient human rights protections such as the right to life, prohibition of slavery and forced labour, right to a fair trial and the right to marry.
You know, no biggie…
And so, as politicians debate the merits of being a signatory to the ECHR – the convention enforced by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) which famously grounded the first Rwanda flight last year – it might be worth reminding people exactly what company the UK would find itself in if it decided to pull out of the ECHR.
Vladimir Putin’s Russia informed the secretary general of the Council of Europe in March 2022 that the country would be leaving the Council and denouncing the ECHR, one month after it carried out its illegal invasion of Ukraine.
An ally to Putin, Belarus has never been part of the Council of Europe which is linked to the ECHR, and as such has never been a signatory to the Convention.
In March, around the same time the Council of Europe decided Russia was no longer a member, it chose to suspend all relations with Belarus due to its “active participation in the aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine”.
They rejoined the convention in 1974 when democracy was restored.
And so, people have been asking if the UK really wants to be associated with two countries involved in an illegal invasion of a European country:
"Does the Home Secretary recognise that if the UK were to renounce the ECHR or tamper with it, it would undermine the Good Friday Agreement and leave the UK in the company of Belarus and Russia?" - @StephenFarryMP
Leaving the ECHR would be incredibly sinister and it should terrify us all.\n\nThe UK would then be joining Russia and Belarus as the only European countries outside it.\n\nI do not trust Westminster with my human rights and you shouldn\u2019t either.\n\nThis is dangerous, dangerous, stuff.
\ud83d\udea8LET\u2019S BE CLEAR. The Prime Minister just said he plans to introduce emergency legislation to disapply human rights laws & has actually threatened to join Russia & Belarus outside of the European convention on human rights.\n\nTHE COUNTRY SHOULD BE IN UPROAR!
Sunak said he would \u201cnot allow a foreign court to block these flights\u201d; wants to jettison ECHR.\n\nStupid - Human trafficking to Rwanda declared illegal by UK Supreme Court.\n\nWhy is he so keen to join Russia and Belarus as the only countries outside ECHR?\nhttps://t.co/9TIQ6eyNUj
I think it's important to remember which countries have left the ECHR in the past.\nThere are two examples.\n\n1. Greece, between 1970-1974, when it was under military dictatorship.\n\n2. Russia, since September 2022, when Putin invaded Ukraine.\n\nDoes the UK belong on this list?