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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 integrity.”

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
Email: defenddemrights@yahoo.com

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