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Judge rules that human rights apply to British troops


In a stunning development, "Human rights laws can be applied to British troops even in combat, a High Court judge has ruled".

Mr Justice Collins said that "sending a soldier out on patrol with defective equipment might be a breach of Article 2 of the Human Rights Act - the right to life, which in the event of death requires an independent inquiry".

It may be a dubious legal opinion, but it has arisen out of the agony of parents trying to compel the British Government to support British soldiers in the field. Can that be too much to ask?

As we wrote here, and as EU Referendum has written at great length, this government sent British soldiers into harm's way in Iraq and Afghanistan with inadequate equipment. As a result British men and women died or were badly injured.

Sometimes they could not perform their mission.

Despite their government's outrageous lack of support, they were often heroic.

Defence Secretary Des Browne protested that inadequate equipment was no longer an issue. But it was an issue, and those who were responsible should be held accountable.

The Government intends to appeal the decision. Their energies could be better spent in defining their military mission and making sure it succeeds.