Radical cleric Abu Hamza can be extradited to the US, European Court of Human Rights rules

Adam Parris-Long

Radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza can be extradited to the US, the European Court of Human Rights has ruled.

Abu Hamza is among six terror suspects who opposed extradition to the US. The European Court of Human Rights ruled that human rights would not be breached if five of the six suspects were sent to serve their sentences in "supermax" high-security US prisons.

Hamza is currently serving a seven year sentence at HM prison Belmarsh for inciting murder and preaching racial hatred. In the US he faces charges of being in contact with Taliban and al-Qaida terrorists, as well as aiding the kidnapping of 16 western tourists in Yemen in December 1998. He also faces charges of attempting to set up a training camp for "violent jihad" in Oregon, US in 1999.

The men now have three months to make an appeal to the grand chamber of the European Court of Rights, during which time they cannot be sent to the US. The court adjourned the appeal decision of Haroon Rashid Aswat, who is alleged to have had a role in the July 7th London bombings.

Speaking in Japan, David Cameron said that he was "very pleased" with the decision to extradite five of the terror suspects. "It is quite right that we have proper legal processes, although sometimes one can get frustrated with how long they take," he said.

Other terror suspects include Babar Ahmad - jailed in 2004 - who was alleged to have run a US-hosted website inciting terrorism. Speaking this morning his father, Ashfaq Ahmad, said that he was "very disappointed" with the decision to extradite the suspects to the US.

“While the decision deals with the issue of prison conditions in the US, the fundamental question remains as to why this matter has even got to Strasbourg and why Babar even needs to be extradited to the US,” he said.

“There has been a serious abuse of process with the police completely mishandling the evidence seized from Babar’s home by sending it to the US before the CPS could take a view on it. Babar is a British citizen accused of a crime said to have been committed in the UK and all the evidence against him was gathered in this country.

"Nevertheless, British justice appears to have been subcontracted to the US. This should be immediately rectified by putting Babar on trial in the UK. We all know what sort of conditions there are [in US “supermax” prisons]…there should be a full public inquiry into the matter," he added.

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