Australia PM rejects independent judicial probe in Haneef terror case

[JURIST] Australian Prime Minister John Howard [official profile] Friday rejected calls for an independent judicial inquiry into the Australian government's handling of the terror case against Dr. Mohammad Haneef [JURIST news archive], calling it a political "stunt" [transcript] by opposition Labour Party leader Kevin Rupp [official profile]. During an interview with Sky News, Howard also welcomed the High Court of Australia's Thursday ruling upholding the constitutionality of control orders [JURIST report] against a terror suspect, calling it a "great litmus test" that demonstrated that a controversial anti-terror law [ANS backgrounder] was "soundly based."

Howard has refused to apologize [JURIST report] for the Australian government's handling of Haneef's case, saying that Haneef was not "victimized" despite being detained as a terrorist suspect for 25 days. On Wednesday, Australian Federal Police Commissioner Mick Keelty indicated that the Australian Federal Police was continuing with an investigation into Haneef [JURIST report] and may submit a new brief of evidence against Haneef to prosecutors. Haneef has not been implicated by UK authorities in June's attempted UK car bomb attacks [JURIST report], and was allowed to travel to India after prosecutors dropped the terror charge [JURIST report] against Haneef due to insufficient evidence. PTI has more.



 

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