Deportation on the Basis of Diplomatic Assurances : Permissible under the European Convention on Human Rights? : a Critical Analysis of the Judgment of the ECtHR in Abu Qatada v the United Kingdom (2012) and Its Impact on the Jurisprudence of the ECtHR
Inspired by the recently concluded litigation seeking to deport the radical Islamic preacher Abu Qatada from the UK to Jordan, this paper aims at examining the 2012 judgment of the ECtHR by focusing on the question under which circumstances a deportation with diplomatic assurances (DWA) may be permissible under the European Convention on Human Rights. Relevant background information will be provided concerning the interplay of the use of the DWA policy and the European Convention on Human Rights as well as concerning the particular circumstances that led to the ECtHR’s ruling in Abu Qatada. In the following analysis of the judgment, the focus will be on the interplay of the DWA policy and the European Convention on Human Rights with special regard to art 3 and art 6 of the Convention. Finally, the impact of this judgment on the future jurisprudence and the DWA policy will be shown. In the light of this judgment, it will be argued that the counter terrorism means of deporting a non-national terrorist suspect with diplomatic assurances seems to be compatible with the Convention if the diplomatic assurances given guarantee a sufficient protection of the human rights of the transferee, which due to the uncertain effects of the DWA policy, still has to be decided on a case-by-case basis.