On Sunday 24 August the ICV held an information session for member societies and members of the community. Approximately 80 people attended to be briefed on important developments that had impacted on our community over recent weeks. President of the ICV, Nadeem Hussain, summarized the key events beginning with the announcement of the Prime Minister and Attorney General on 5 August around the proposed extension of the National Security Legislation and culminating with the meeting with the Prime Minister and the reasons why the ICV withdrew.
ICV Secretary, Ghaith Krayem, summarized the key points of the proposed law changes based on the little information released by the government at this stage. These included:
- The restriction on travel to ‘designated areas’;
- The change of the onus of proof so that someone visiting a ‘designated area’ would need to prove that they had not been there for a criminal reason;
- The proposal to retain online data of all persons not just those suspected of a crime;
- The proposal to make permanent the laws relating to detention and control orders.
- The proposal to broaden the definition of a terrorist Organisation and what it means to assist a terrorist Organisation;
- The proposal to broaden the crime of making public any information about a security Organisation.
Ghaith Krayem then outlined the media strategy being used in recent times and the objectives of the ICV in this area.
The session concluded with questions from the floor and an outline of the advocacy program over the coming weeks. While there was overwhelming support for the positions taken recently by the ICV, our members wanted us to make a greater effort in keeping them informed as events develop and to ensure that the ICV is working closely with the Board of Imams so that we present a unified position to the public.
It was an extremely worthwhile session and the ICV will look to holding more of these to ensure that our community is kept well up to date with what is occurring.
Source: ICV newsletter