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UK Home Office ordered to ‘reconsider’ ban on LTTE

Following a landmark judgement from Britain’s Proscribed Organisations Appeal Commission last year, the Home Office now has 90 days to “reconsider” an application to de-proscribe the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) as a terrorist organisation in the United Kingdom.

The Commission held a hearing on relief last month, ruling that a referral to Britain’s parliament was not necessary, and instead referred the decision to the Home Office.

A decision under section 5(4) of the 2000 Terrorism Act would have ordered the UK Secretary of State to lay an order before Parliament, which could have allowed it to decide on de-proscription.

“An order under section 5 (4) is a very unusual remedy,” the Commission decided, noting that it was “not the default remedy in this scheme”.

“It is unusual on an application for judicial review for a court not only to quash a flawed decision but also to direct the decision maker how to make the fresh decision,” it added.

It went on to conclude that the UK Home Office has 90 days from the order, which was made on February 18th 2021, to reconsider the application to de-proscribe the LTTE.  

See the full judgement here.

Last year, the Commission found that the Home Office decision to keep the LTTE proscribed as a terrorist organisation was “flawed” and unlawful.

In response, the Sri Lankan High Commissioner, foreign ministry, and prime minister all called on British authorities to ensure a ban was kept on the organisation, with Rajapaksa claiming the LTTE was “very active”.

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