UK in Malawi joined over 55 like-minded allies to back the Canadian initiative to enhance international cooperation to end the practice of arbitrary arrests, detentions or sentencing.
The Canadian Arbitrary Declaration seeks to enhance international cooperation and end the practice of arbitrary arrest, detention or sentencing, to exercise leverage over foreign governments.
In a statement issued on Monday by the UK Foreign Commonwealth Development Office , UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab says the declaration increases the diplomatic pressure on those who choose to detain foreign and dual nationals with no legal basis.
Raab said:“The practice of arbitrarily detaining individuals as leverage over another government is indefensible and the UK will not tolerate it.
“Depriving someone of their liberty with no legal basis violates fundamental human rights. The UK is proud to stand on solidarity with over 55 other countries to bring this unacceptable practice to an end.”
The statement adds that the arbitrary arrest or detention of foreign nationals to compel action or to exercise leverage over a foreign government is contrary to international law, undermines international relations, and exposes people traveling, working and living abroad to greater risk.
“Today’s declaration increases the diplomatic pressure on those who choose to detain foreign and dual nationals with no legal basis.
“This declaration enhances international cooperation and sends a collective show of strength to those countries who carry out this unacceptable practice. It also reaffirms the essential rights provided under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, including the provision to allow consular access to detained nationals,” it reads further.
The G7 Foreign and Development Ministerial meeting later this year will see the Foreign Secretary and G7 partners generate further mechanisms to uphold international law, tackle human rights abuses and stand up for our shared values.