Committee-Defend Welcomes Findings
That EU “Terrorist List” Violates Basic Human Rights
of Prof. Jose Maria Sison and Others
International Committee -- DEFEND
13 November 2007
The Netherlands-based International Committee-DEFEND welcomes the official
report of the Council of Europe human rights investigator Mr. Dick Marty declaring
that the European Union’s so-called anti-terror list “violates basic human rights”,
including those of Prof. Jose Maria Sison who has been serially and indefinitely
blacklisted since 28 October 2002 by the Council of the European Union.
The report, formally presented to the Council of Europe yesterday, states that
"[t]he present system of blacklists flouts the fundamental principles which are
the basis of human rights". It condemns the already much-criticized blacklists
of both the EU and the United Nations for violating the right to due process.
The suspects are not given the reason for the listing, are not allowed the right
of reply and are deprived of sufficient rights for defense. After they are blacklisted,
it is nearly impossible for them to have themselves de-listed.
Governments and their security forces and secret service have violated national
and international covenants with impunity under the guise of national security
and the US-led “war on terror”.
According to Mr. Marty, “Despite recent procedural improvements it remains
almost impossible, in practice, to be removed from the blacklist – a situation
that is illegal and unacceptable.”
Such is the case of Prof. Jose Maria Sison who was included in the EU’s blacklist
in 2002. Prof. Sison filed a case against the Council of European Union before
the European Court of First Instance. The Court decided in his favor on 11 July
2007 annulling his blacklisting. But said Council sought to preempt the court
decision by taking a decision on 28 June to include Prof. Sison in its blacklist
of so-called terrorists.
The Marty report welcomed the decision of the European Court of First Instance.
It also noted the possibilities for more thorough pleading by Prof. Sison in order
to seek compensation for moral and material damages.
In a statement issued earlier Prof. Sison claimed: “My rights are so flagrantly
violated, including my right to be informed of the specific crime that I am
being accused of, to presumption of innocence, to due process, to defense,
to the essential means of human existence, to the most basic right to life, to
family union and privacy, and to security from damage to my moral and physical
Committee-DEFEND will continue its international campaign to defend the rights
of Prof. Sison and other Filipino progressives against their persecution by reactionary
forces led by the US and the European Union.
For more information:
Ruth de Leon
Telephone Nos.: 00-31-30-8895306