To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to his oral contribution to the November hearing of the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy, that he could absolutely provide assurance that money from the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund is not being used to fund activities that might lead to the death of people in other countries, what assessment he has made of whether reports of the use of that funding for specialist anti-terror courts in Pakistan is incompatible with his statement.
The Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) takes its responsibility to do no harm very seriously. All CSSF programmes comply with the UK’s domestic and international human rights obligations and have robust measures in place to protect the human rights of beneficiaries.
CSSF programmes in Pakistan have supported the reform of the criminal justice system, including the investigation and prosecution of serious crimes, in a manner compliant with human rights. For all security and justice programmes, Overseas Security and Justice Assessments (OSJAs) are used as an additional risk management process to assess and to mitigate human rights risks. OSJAs are specifically designed to improve human rights standards and strengthen the rule of law in partner countries. They also help to guide decision makers and Ministers on how to provide security assistance overseas while managing the consequences for human rights.
My Rt. Hon friend, the FCO Minister responsible for South Asia, receives regular updates on the risks associated with the Rule of Law programme’s activities. In addition, I have seen the independent OSJA audit, which included an overview of the Pakistan Rule of Law programme, and am confident that activities have been delivered in a way that is consistent with the UK’s opposition to the death penalty