Mohammad Haneef's Erosion Of Civil Liberties

821 Words4 Pages
Mohammad Haneef & Erosion of Civil Liberties Weland La ‘Australia’s laws are severely eroding civil liberties.’ Discuss this statement in light of the Haneef Case and one other issue (such as the right to silence, privacy, etc.), commenting on the extent to which the law balances the rights of the individual with the needs for community safety. In correlation with the Haneef Case, Australia’s laws are severely eroding civil liberties as demonstrated by NSW’s introduction of the Evidence Amendment (Evidence of Silence) Act 2013. The Anti-Terrorism Act (No. 2) 2005 (Cth) prevalent at the time of the arrest of Dr Haneef reveals the incapabilities of Australia’s law to balance the rights of the individual…show more content…
Dr Haneef’s detainment without charge was in direct violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) article 10 and 11. Article 10 and 11 state respectively that “Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him” and “Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defence” . Because Dr Haneef was not given a fair trial upon his criminal charge, nor was he presumed to be innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, this illuminates the erosion of an individual’s right to civil liberties. These two conditions are regarded as an international human right under the United Nation’s UDHR, yet, Australia’s laws are depicted to be disregarding an individual’s civil liberties in exchange for community…show more content…
That is, it is implied that you are possibly lying and are guilty of an offence. This repercussion is an infringement of article 11 of the UDHR and Australia’s legal maxim (innocent until proven guilty). Additionally, a negative inference opposes Australia’s adversarial system’s criminal burden of proof (beyond a reasonable doubt), the concept that the defendant has the presumption of innocence and that the State (prosecutor) must prove that the defendant is guilty by providing evidence to an unbiased judge or magistrate. “Right to silence’ law changed” (SMH 2012) emphasises the erosion of our civil liberties. Stephen Blanks, secretary for the NSW Council for Civil Liberties, said the right to remain silent under police questioning and the privilege against self-incrimination were generally recognised international standards “which lie at the heart of the notion of a fair procedure". Both instances of Australian law manifest an erosion of our civil liberties, and thus, an urgent requirement for our laws to consider a balance between the rights of the individual with the needs for community safety, taking into account the liberty of the individual and the rule of

More about Mohammad Haneef's Erosion Of Civil Liberties

Open Document