icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm

Hamas should come off terror list – EU legal advisor

Hamas should come off terror list – EU legal advisor
The EU should consider taking Palestinian Islamist group Hamas and Sri Lankan rebel group Tamil Tigers from its list of banned terrorist organizations due to a lack of evidence, a top European Court legal adviser has argued.

The EU “cannot rely on facts and evidence found in press articles and information from the internet, rather than on decisions of competent authorities, to support a decision to maintain a listing,” said Eleanor Sharpston, a legal advisor to the European Court of Justice, according to the DPA news agency.

Sharpston described the grounds for keeping both groups on the list of outlawed terrorist organizations used by the EU as “not sufficient.”

Hamas and Tamil Tigers could have been removed from the list as long ago as 2014 following the court ruling that said the decision was based on “factual imputations derived from the press and the internet.” The EU Council which represented all 28 member states launched an appeal. Sharpston, a European Court adviser, has now recommended it be rejected.

Sharpston said that the EU has to present evidence on the attacks carried out by the groups. Moreover, she added that the EU can’t rely on terror lists drawn up by countries outside the bloc, such as the US.

Advisors’ opinions are not binding for the court, but they are generally taken into account when delivering judgment.

It could take the court several months to take a final decision.

The EU’s terrorism list was approved after the 9/11 attacks on the US in 2001. It allowed the bloc to freeze groups’ financial assent and stepped up the cooperation between police and justice officials

As of now, the list consists of 23 groups, including the Kurdish militant PKK, the military wing of Lebanon’s Hezbollah and Palestinian militant groups such as Islamic Jihad. Hamas was added to the list in late 2001.

Hamas has always described itself as a resistance movement rather than a terrorist group, though its charter says its members are pledged to destroying Israel through jihad. Apart from the EU, the US, Canada and Japan consider Hamas a terrorist organization.

Dear readers and commenters,

We have implemented a new engine for our comment section. We hope the transition goes smoothly for all of you. Unfortunately, the comments made before the change have been lost due to a technical problem. We are working on restoring them, and hoping to see you fill up the comment section with new ones. You should still be able to log in to comment using your social-media profiles, but if you signed up under an RT profile before, you are invited to create a new profile with the new commenting system.

Sorry for the inconvenience, and looking forward to your future comments,

RT Team.

Podcasts