Press Release: Release of “Ricin 8” Exposes Labour’s Manifesto of Fear

Islamic Human Rights Commission

13 April 2005

Press Release: Release of “Ricin 8” Exposes Labour’s Manifesto of Fear

IHRC welcomes the release today of the eight men accused of the so called “ricin poison plot”. The men were acquitted and released following a six month trial. In total, they spent over two years in the notorious Belmarsh maximum security prison.

IHRC views the releases as yet another gaping hole in the government’s claim that there is a real and substantial terrorist threat facing Britain. Over 90 arrests were made in the anti-terror sweep that netted the men with 9 charges and only a single conviction. Yet, sensational reporting by the media coupled with almost daily prejudicial statements by the government and security services create an environment of fear which fuels racism and Islamophobia.

Following the initial arrests, Prime Minister Blair denied these men the presumption of innocence by stating that the arrests showed that the continued threat of international terrorism was “present and real and with us now and its potential is huge\”. A month later prior to the invasion of Iraq, Mr Blair publicly linked the ricin with Saddam Hussein, reiterating what Colin Powell stated in his presentation to the UN Security Council.

IHRC Chairperson, Massoud Shadjareh stated:

“These releases fully expose the Labour Party’s manifesto of fear. Once again, the government’s ‘intelligence’ has turned out to be nothing more than a malicious pack of lies which has destroyed lives, created hatred and falsely justified draconian anti-terrorism laws.”

For more information please contact,

Islamic Human Rights Commission
PO Box 598
United Kingdom

Telephone (+44) 20 8904 4222
Fax (+44) 20 8904 5183