Clause 1 — Encouragement of Terrorism
Orders of the Day — Terrorism Bill — [1st Allotted Day]
Gerald Howarth (Shadow Minister, Defence; Aldershot, Conservative)
The hon. and learned Gentleman and my hon. Friend Mr. Grieve have made a forceful argument. Over the past few years, however, some seriously inflammatory statements have been made by Omar Bakri Muhammad and others. I have complained about that, and Mr. Dismore has been complaining for years about it. Every time that I have raised the issue, including with the Foreign Secretary when he was Home Secretary, and asked why no action is being taken against such people, we are always told that there is insufficient evidence or insufficient laws on the statute book to deal with it. Can the hon. and learned Gentleman, as a lawyer, assist the Committee to understand how, with the plethora of laws to which he has referred, the Government have been singularly incapable of dealing with such people, and yet another piece of legislation is proposed for us, which we know is also unlikely to be enforceable?