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Police powers and human rights in the context of terrorism

By Richard Stone


Purpose – The object of the paper is to analyse the justifications for the modification of police\ud powers in response to terrorist threats, placing this issue in a European context.\ud Design/methodology/approach – The paper consists of a critical examination of provisions\ud relating to terrorism emanating from the European Union and the Council of Europe (European\ud Convention on Human Rights (ECHR)), and the relevant English law on police powers of stop and\ud search, arrest, and detention.\ud Findings – Nothing in European law requires the amendments to police powers contained in English\ud law; European law requires respect for human rights, even in dealing with terrorism; a shoot-to-kill\ud policy is prohibited by the ECHR; and balance is an unsatisfactory method of resolving conflicts in\ud this area.\ud Research limitations/implications – The research was limited in its scope to certain areas of\ud police powers, and to certain fundamental European documents. Future research should consider the\ud issue in relation to wider areas.\ud Originality/value – It challenges the idea of balance between liberty and security, proposing a test\ud based on necessity instead

Topics: M210 Public Law
Publisher: Emerald Group
Year: 2006
DOI identifier: 10.1108/03090550610681213
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