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  • Writer's pictureFriends of Sinn Féin USA

New Law Would Give British Agents Free Hand in The North

Pat Finucane, Human Rights Lawyer Assassinated by British Agents in 1989

The British government is currently pushing the Covert Human Intelligence Sources bill through Parliament. This legislation, when enacted into law would give free rein to recruit child and vulnerable informers as well as a place no legal restrictions on the actions of agents.

The British government dismissed an amendment that would have explicitly banned agents from killing, torturing, or engaging in sexual violence.

In a press release, Amnesty International stated that "It’s hugely worrying that we’re a step closer to seeing this deeply dangerous bill become law. MPs are signing off on a license for government agencies to authorise torture and murder Giving such disturbing powers to bodies including MI5 and the police could have devastating impacts."

Sinn Féin MP John Finucane has called on the British government to reject the Covert Human Intelligence Sources bill.The North Belfast MP said: “Many families in Ireland have suffered directly as a result of MI5 collusion with loyalist terror gangs. This includes the killing of my own father and human rights lawyer Pat Finucane, who was murdered by a loyalist death squad operating under the direction of MI5 and the British state.

It is also deeply concerning that the Covert Human Intelligence Sources bill currently being debated in Westminster would give further protection to state agents involved in serious offenses, including sexual offenses, torture, and murder.

The CHIS bill must be binned immediately. State agents and informers cannot be placed above the rule of law.”

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