An e-petition calling on the Government to grant Babar Ahmad a UK trial attracted 140,000 signatures – well in excess of the 100,000 needed to qualify for a Commons Chamber debate – but the case is instead being included as part of a wider debate on extradition in Westminster Hall at 2.30pm.
Caroline Lucas MP has requested to speak during the session in order to highlight the campaign. She said:
“That the e-petition to grant Babar Ahmad a UK trial has gained such astounding support so quickly shows the level of public anger over the fact that a British citizen is entering his eighth year of being held, without charge and trial, in a maximum security prison right here on UK soil – at the behest of the US.
“As we approach the tenth anniversary of Guantanamo Bay, this appalling case is a further reminder that some of the worst effects of the ‘War On Terror’ remain with us today.
“While I accept it is difficult for the Backbench Business Committee to devote Parliamentary time in the Commons Chamber to every petition that passes the 100,000 threshold, the fact that this campaign was not a high profile newspaper-led effort, but a purely grass roots one makes it a particularly strong contender.
“The family and the 140,000 plus people who signed the e-petition now deserve a full Commons debate on a voteable motion.”