Al-Haq is pleased to inform you that Public Interest Lawyer’s (PIL) request for an appeal in the case of Saleh Hasan v Secretary of State and Industry has been granted. PIL is now seeking to obtain legal aid extended for this full appeal.
On 19 November 2007, the UK High Court of Justice denied the claim of Saleh Hasan, filed by PIL in cooperation with Al-Haq, requesting the UK government to clarify its position on its arms-related licensing agreements with Israel. In particular the claim sought to require the UK government to reveal how it satisfies its own criteria that material sold under these agreements is not used in the commission of human rights abuses.
PIL sought a declaration from the High Court that in future dealings with Israel, the UK Government must be transparent about their compliance with the UK Export Control Act of 2002, which incorporates the EU “consolidated criteria” governing the export of military equipment. This Act prohibits the UK government from selling arms related products where there is a risk that they will be used for repressive purposes.
Mr. Justice Collins found that while the UK government could provide the information requested, it would involve a “considerable amount of work” and that the UK Parliament, through the Quadripartite Committee already exercised a sufficient level of oversight over arms-export licensing, making the claim unnecessary. The Court therefore dismissed the claim.
The Court of Appeal found there to be strategic questions with regard to High Court’s dismissal of the claim and granted the appeal on 11 Feb 2008.
Al-Haq and PIL welcome this decision of the Court of Appeal and are looking forward to the opportunity of a thorough analysis of Mr. Saleh Hasan case.