Man deported from Ireland to Jordan over IS links

George Hook spoke to Colm O'Gorman, Executive Director of Amnesty International Ireland today.

The Department of Justice has said it has deported a man who was identified by Gardaí as the main recruiter in Ireland for the so-called Islamic State militant group.

The man, who isn’t being identified for legal reasons, was deported to Jordan yesterday evening after failing to secure an emergency injunction at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

Amnesty International have stated that the deportation was a worrying sign of backsliding on the absolute ban on torture as fears of personal safety surround the man in question.

George Hook spoke to Colm O’Gorman, the Executive Director of Amnesty International Ireland on the programme today, who called the situation concerning.

“I think that this state, and every other state, has a clear responsibility, actually an obligation under International Human Rights Law, to protect their citizens and people living within the state from criminality and from terrorism particularly. What international law does is an absolute prohibition on torture, which means that states are not legally allowed to deport people back to countries where they are at significant risk to torture. That’s what's at play here,” Colm O‘Gorman said.

He also questioned the Irish authorities who had complied with the deportation of this suspected Islamic State recruiter, saying “What Ireland said was, we think you’re involved in terrorism, now if you leave there’ll be no hassle but if you don’t go somewhere else... be involved in promoting terrorism somewhere else we don’t care about that, just don’t do it here.”

The man had gone to the High Court to prevent his deportation denying claims he had consulted with senior violent extremist leaders outside Ireland or recruited members for Islamic extremist groups.

He told the court he was tortured in Jordan during the 1990s due to his political activities and faced being tortured if sent back there.

The court heard he has lived here since 2000 on the basis of having an Irish citizen child but last year authorities decided not to renew his residency permit because the child had not been residing in the State and was living with his mother elsewhere.

Colm O’Gorman said the actions of the European Court were deeply worrying.

“What the European court were asked to do in that instance was to give an injunction to prevent his deportation, whilst his application for asylum on the basis of the risk of torture if he were returned to Jordan was being looked into, the European court refused to do so,” he said.

He also said that in states like Ireland where there is evidence that somebody is involved in terrorism they need to carry that through, they need to prosecute and they need to hold them to account.

The Department of Justice has confirmed that he was deported from Dublin Airport at lunchtime yesterday and arrived in Jordan yesterday evening.