Letters: Concerns over terrorism and the Taliban

Letters: Even more disturbing is that the execution of a British citizen accused of being involved in terrorist activity without any due legal process seems acceptable

There are a number of deeply disturbing issues about the reports that Abdul Jabbar, a British citizen killed in a US drone strike in north Waziristan, was to lead a British terrorist cell (Drone killed British Taliban plotter, reports say, 6 October). First, the suggestion that he was to lead a terrorist cell in the UK appears to come from one unnamed "senior Pakistani security source". It is of great concern that a single unnamed source, who, it could be argued, has a vested interest in justifying the death of Mr Jabbar and raising fears about terrorism, has such an influence on the media. But perhaps even more disturbing is the fact that the execution of a British citizen accused of being involved in terrorist activity without any due legal process seems acceptable to many in the media and beyond.

Chris Cole


• As you suggest, conflict resolution in Afghanistan will require careful negotiation (Editorial, 7 October), but the signs so far are not promising. The Afghan government recently named a 70-person "peace council", which is supposed to negotiate with elements of the Taliban. Ominously, the peace council is largely made up of former mujahideen and warlords allegedly responsible for multiple human rights abuses. Some are accused of massacring civilians during the civil war of the 1990s; some are notorious for their persecution for women. In short, the peace council has all the appearance of a rogues' gallery. President Karzai should immediately set up an independent team that would debar anyone from serving on the council if they face credible allegations of human rights violations. Mr Karzai recently shed public tears for Afghanistan's future. This will unfortunately mean little to the Afghan people if negotiating with the Taliban means turning a blind eye to human rights abuse.

Kate Allen

Director, Amnesty International UK

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

David Cameron and Pakistan's Asif Ali Zardari show united front on terrorism

British and Pakistani leaders make joint statement about counterterrorism after two weeks of diplomatic tension

Patrick Wintour and Paul Owen

06, Aug, 2010 @9:56 AM

Article image
UK's secret policy on torture revealed
Exclusive: Document shows intelligence officers instructed to weigh importance of information sought against pain inflicted

Ian Cobain

04, Aug, 2011 @11:42 AM

Editorial: The case for an inquiry

Editorial: The questions raised by our front-page story (MI5's role in outsourcing torture of British citizens) are not new: they are at the heart of the difficulties which terrorism poses for democracies


14, Jul, 2008 @11:01 PM

Nick Cohen: Will we need to close the door to Pakistan's dispossessed?

Nick Cohen: Our leaders are losing sleep over the Taliban's advance and what that could spell for Britain

Nick Cohen

25, Apr, 2009 @11:01 PM

Article image
Who’s to blame for the savagery seen in Manchester and London? | Letters
Letters: John Pilger and 56 others on the west’s facilitation of terrorism; Steven Greer on the warped interpretation of Islam motivating jihadis; Ian Pollard and Dr Susan Juned on Wahhabism and Saudi Arabia; Peter Shadwell and Eric Goodyer on Theresa May’s flawed proposals on sentencing and human rights laws


08, Jun, 2017 @5:58 PM

Article image
Policing jihadi terrorism requires accountability all round | Letters
Letters: The De Menezes verdict questions our safeguards against the abuse of power in the face of terror – as in its way does the radicalisation of four Brighton teenagers


03, Apr, 2016 @7:10 PM

Article image
UK drops security claim blocking Pakistani’s lawsuit over ‘torture’
Government abandons argument that UK-US intelligence ties preclude letting Yunus Rahmatullah sue for damages

Richard Norton-Taylor

11, Nov, 2014 @5:28 PM

Translating terrorism | Natalie Hanman
Natalie Hanman: David Miliband is under attack for justifying terrorism, but the word's many conflicting definitions serve authorities well

Natalie Hanman

17, Aug, 2009 @7:30 PM

Letters: Secrets, lies and this dirty war
Letters: It is important to note that the invasion of Afghanistan, like the invasion of Iraq, had no legal justification in terms of UN security council resolutions

26, Jul, 2010 @11:05 PM

Afghanistan: Groundhog day
Editorial: Kim Howells is saying publicly what many in government must be thinking privately: that troops are dying needlessly in a war that is unwinnable, with a strategy that is unworkable, and that we should be thinking of the alternative now


04, Nov, 2009 @12:05 AM