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Sunday, July 16, 2006

No justice for Jean Charles

Last year, Jean Charles de Menezes died in what appeared to be a shoot to kill policy by London's Metropolitan Police following the London Tube bombings of 7 July 2005. Miss Eagle posted here, here, here and here. It was a case of mistaken identity. Menezes was not a terrorist nor did he have anything to do with terrorists.

Now, over twelve months later, it appears that no police personnel will face charges but that the Met itself could face charges under Occupational Health & Safety laws. The clouds have not yet cleared over the head of the Police Commissioner, Sir Ian Blair.

In war, when land forces are in battle, there is an event called 'hot pursuit'. This recognizes the fact that, in the heat of battle, troops may inadvertently cross boundaries in pursuit of the enemy. In such cases, the nation whose boundaries have been crossed usually ignores the incursion. Sometimes, a sympathetic neighbouring nation will turn a blind eye to such incursions when under 'hot pursuit' troops deliberately pursue their adversaries when they seek shelter across a national boundary.

It would now appear that the so-called War on Terror allows police, if only in a de facto way, the provisions of 'hot pursuit'. Jean Charles de Menezes is dead. His death was unwarranted. His death bore the hallmarks of a summary execution. No one has been held accountable. There is no justice for Jean Charles nor is his Brazilian family. Consideration has been given to the Metropolitian Police. Justice has been denied the Menezes family.