UK terror watchdog warns of counter-terrorism bill

The British government’s terrorism watchdog has warned that Prime Minister David Cameron’s counter-terrorism bill may backfire and play into the hands of terrorists.

David Anderson QC, the independent reviewer of terrorism laws, believes the bill will ultimately alienate Muslim communities and may fuel terrorist recruitment.

“If the wrong decisions are taken, the new law risks provoking a backlash in affected communities, hardening perceptions of an illiberal or Islamophobic approach, alienating those whose integration into British society is already fragile, and playing into the hands of those who, by peddling a grievance agenda, seek to drive people further towards extremism and terrorism,” Anderson wrote in his annual report on the terror laws which was published on Thursday.

“These issues matter because they concern the scope of UK discrimination, hate speech and public order laws, the limit that the state may place on some of our most basic freedoms, the proper limits of surveillance, and the acceptability of imposing suppressive measures without the protections of the criminal law,” he added.

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