PM CAMERON addressed the House of Commons yesterday on the crisis with Russia, the IS movement in Iraq and security in the UK.
On the latter, he said: ‘Let me turn to how we address the terrorist threat at home . . . There are two key areas where we now need to strengthen our powers to fill specific gaps in our armoury.
‘These are around preventing suspects from travelling and dealing decisively with those already here who pose a risk. . .
‘’We will introduce specific and targeted legislation . . . providing the police with the temporary power to seize a passport at the border, during which time they will be able to investigate the individual concerned. . .
‘Our current Royal Prerogative powers are being challenged in the courts and I want it to be clear – if there is any judgement which threatens the operation of our existing powers, we will introduce primary legislation immediately so that Parliament, not the courts, can determine whether it is right that we have these powers and I can announce today that we will now start preparing this primary legislation and consult parliament on the draft clauses.
‘Now, as well as stopping people going, we must also keep out foreign fighters who pose a threat to the UK.
‘We do already have important powers to block return. We can deprive dual nationals of their citizenship to stop them returning. We can bar foreign nationals on the basis of the threat they pose. And we legislated in the Immigration Act to allow stronger powers to strip citizenship from naturalised Britons.
‘But of course these powers do not apply to those who are solely British nationals who could be rendered stateless if deprived of citizenship. . .
‘We are clear in principal that what is needed is a targeted, discretionary power to allow us to exclude British nationals from the UK and we’ll work up proposals on this basis with our agencies, in line with our international obligations and discuss the details on a cross-party basis.
‘We are also putting our long-standing arrangements on aviation security around the world on a statutory footing. Airlines will have to comply with our no-fly list arrangements, give us information on passenger lists and comply with our security screening requirements. If they do not do this their flights will not be able to land in Britain.
‘Second, we need stronger powers to manage the risk posed by suspected extremists already here in the United Kingdom. The Home Secretary can already impose terrorism prevention and investigation measures on security grounds, including overnight residence requirements and internet restrictions.
‘But the intelligence agencies and the police believe they need stronger powers to impose further restrictions and the independent reviewer of counter-terrorism legislation, David Anderson, agrees.
‘So we will introduce new powers to add to our existing terrorism prevention and investigation measures, including stronger locational constraints for suspects . . . either through enhanced use of exclusion zones or through relocation powers. . . Dealing with this terrorist threat is not just about new powers, it is also about how we combat extremism in all its forms.
‘That is why we have a new approach to tackling radicalisation, focusing on all types of extremism, not just violent extremism. This has included stopping the funding of organisations that promote extremism, banning hate preachers. . .’
He concluded: ‘Adhering to British values is not an option or a choice.’