UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson vowed on Sunday to impose sanctions and abolish the early release of terrorism convicts, accusing him of political exploitation of a bloody attack by a parole in London.
Two days after the stabbing that killed two people on Friday at the London Bridge, the prime minister accused the opposition Labor Party of being behind a law that allowed the aggressor to enjoy parole.
Osman Khan was released from prison in 2018, six years after he was convicted of terrorism-related offenses.
“This (judicial) organization has to end – I repeat, it has to end,” the conservative political leader said in an article in the Mail on Sunday, amid an election campaign in preparation for the December 12 legislative vote.
“If you are convicted of a serious terrorist crime, you must get a mandatory sentence of at least 14 years in prison, and some should never go out.”
“The condemnation of all crimes of terrorism and extremism must be carried out. These criminals must spend every day of their punishment, without exception.”
– “Proper monitoring” –
The British Prime Minister that similar measures would have avoided the attack by the Islamic State. “Give me a majority, I protect you from terrorism,” he said.
Osman Khan was sentenced to indefinite imprisonment in 2012, with a minimum of eight years. His sentence became 16 years in appeal in 2013 for belonging to a group that wanted to blow up targets in London.
On Friday, his attack began at the Fishmongers Center, where he was attending a prison rehabilitation lecture organized by Cambridge University in a building very close to the London Bridge in the center of the British capital, where another ISIS attack in 2017 killed eight people.
Johnson said, through the BBC, that “some 74” convicted of terrorism have benefited from an early release like Osman Khan, and have been subjected since the attack to “appropriate monitoring.”
But Johnson’s remarks soon drew criticism that he wanted to use the tragedy and come up with proposals not on the Conservative platform he announced at the end of November.
– “Unresponsive reaction” –
Johnson was criticized by the victim’s father, Jack Merit, whose death was not officially confirmed. Merritt, 25, is a member of the Cambridge Institute of Criminology and was the coordinator of the Learning Together program aimed at bringing the academic and prison world together. Friday’s lecture was sponsored by this program.
“We do not need unintended reactions,” David Merritt said in a tweet on Twitter, pointing to “the destruction of the behavior monitoring service, which is supposed to monitor prisoners after their release, as well as rehabilitation services.”
Since the conservatives took office in 2010, these departments have been subject to significant budget cuts and “we are therefore less secure,” Merit said.
“In the midst of the election, the tragedy should not be politically benefited,” Ed Davy, the Liberal Democrats’ vice president, told Sky News.
Labor leader Jeremy Corbin said on Sky News that “convicts of terrorists should not necessarily” be imprisoned.
“No government can avoid all attacks,” he said later during his campaign in York, but “the government can act to minimize the likelihood of similar terrorist acts.”
For his part, Foreign Minister Dominique Rapp, in an effort to defend the Conservatives, said that “no one can believe that taking appropriate measures to protect (…) in any way” would be a political employment of events.
This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for OBSERVATORY NEWS from different countries around the world – material edited and published by OBSERVATORY staff in our newsroom.
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