英軍屠殺罪行工委會簽名運動‧納茲里首名部長簽名

(吉隆坡17日訊)由追討英軍屠殺罪行工委會發起《道歉吧!英政府》全國簽名運動,首相署部長拿督斯里納茲里今日成為第一個簽署的國陣部長。

英軍屠殺罪行工委會本月10日發起10萬人簽名運動,獲得國大黨烏雪國會議員卡瑪拉納登支持,和引介該組織到國會與納茲里會面。

納茲里認同1948年峇冬加里大屠殺案死者家屬的努力,並指尋求正義沒有時限,即使屠殺案發生在上個世紀也可以討回公道。

部長也表示將尋求國會下議院議長丹斯里班迪卡的批准,把要求英國政府道歉的請願明信片放在每一位國會議員座位上。

他今日在英軍屠殺罪行工委會義務律師郭義民等人陪同下,在國會走廊召開新聞發佈會時,當場在《道歉吧!英政府》請願明信片上簽名,以示支持。

詢及大馬政府是否會向英國政府提出正式要求道歉時,納茲里指將詢問外交部如何提供協助。

簽名活動在12月統計

較早前,郭義民透露,英軍屠殺罪行工委會希望能收集到10萬個簽名,雖然他們沒為這項活動設下期限,不過會在12月12日,即峇冬加里大屠殺案64年周年進行統計。

英國高庭在今年9月,駁回死者家屬挑戰英國政府不召開聽證會調查案件的司法檢討申請,不過死者家屬已於10月2日提出上訴。

數名死者家屬包括張觀英、張玉球、林國、追討英軍屠殺罪行工委會主席陳觀添、華總副總秘書陳耀星、青運總會長陳沛良等人都到國會出席新聞發佈會。

(星洲日報)

Campaign for UK apology over Batang Kali massacre gets backing from Malaysian lawmakers

KUALA LUMPUR: Efforts by relatives of the Batang Kali massacre victims to push for an apology from the British Government received a boost following backing from Malaysian lawmakers here.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Mohd Nazri Aziz said support will be sought from lawmakers here from both sides of the political divide here for the signature campaign seeking the apology.

“I will seek permission from the Speaker of Dewan Rakyat to place the forms on the MPS tables to allow them to participate in the signature campaign,” he told reporters Wednesday during a press conference at the Parliament lobby with relatives of the Batang Kali massacre victims and survivors of the incident.

Besides this, he said he would also seek assistance from Wisma Putra and the Attorney-General’s Chambers for the apology and get the official account of the incident expunged from the Hansard of the British Parliament, following a court decision there stating there was a cover-up.

In the incident, 24 men, mostly rubber tappers, were shot dead in the Sungai Rimoh rubber estate on Dec 11 and 12, 1948 and their houses set on fire by the 2nd Battalion of the Scots Guards, during operations against the communist insurgency.

President of the Queen’s Bench Division Sir John Thomas and High Court of England and Wales Justice Colman Maurice Treacy had heard the judicial review of the British Government’s position on the killings.

In their judgement, it stated the men were not running away and that two of the soldiers implicated, George Kydd and Robert Brownrigg, had reportedly said they were told by the army to testify that those killed had been trying to escape.

(The conclusion of an inquiry into the incident in 1948/9 was that those killed were shot while trying to escape and was tabled before the British Parliament.)

On Sunday, survivors and relatives of the massacre launched a signature campaign, in the form of a postcard address to British Prime Minister, to hold the British Government accountable for the killings.

The surviving families members are also appealing against the British High Court decision that there was no obligation to hold a public inquiry into the killings.

Launching of 2012 Signature Campaign

The Sun

The Star

Sin Chew Jit Poh

Claimants Seeking Permission To Appeal

Summary of Claimants’ Application for Permission to Appeal

 

  1. The lawyer for victims families’ namely Chong Nyok Keyu, Loh Ah Choi, Lim Kok and Wooi Kum Thai (“the Claimant”) have filed an application for permission to appeal so that the UK appellate court may decide on:
    1. Duty: whether there is a duty for the British Government to hold an inquiry on the killings in Batang Kali in December 1948; and

 

  1. Discretion: whether the refusal by the British Government to exercise the discretion to hold an inquiry was justified in law.

 

  1. At the High Court level, the Claimants succeeded in establishing the factual basis and the British Government had legal responsibility for the acts of the Scots Guards who killed the innocent civilians at Batang Kali, subject to any cross-appeal by the British Government.

 

  1. Duty
    1. Given conflicts between European Convention of Human Rights (“ECHR”) and UK Human Right Act, the High Court regarded itself as bound by domestic authority. It is only by being able to appeal that appellate Courts can re-evaluate whether previous, binding decisions should be maintained in the light of subsequent European Court of Human Right’s case law, namely Janowiec (201).

 

  1. This case involves issue of “the most fundamental right – the right to lifeand serious mass human rights violations, albeit from decades earlier.

 

  1. This is a case is of sufficient public importance to warrant further consideration of human rights and customary international law arguments.

 

  1. Discretion
    1. Turning to the substantive reasons for this Court’s analysis upholding the British Government’s exercise of discretion, the Claimants ask the High Court to accept that they can properly invite the Court of Appeal to take a different view. Moreover, the issues are important and it is in the public interest that the case proceeds.

 

  1. There are many questions left unanswered. These include:-

                                      i.            There is powerful evidence regarding deliberate execution of the innocent civilians;

 

                                    ii.            There is the reference to the then Attorney General Sir Stafford Foster-Sutton having uncovered a “bona fide mistake”;

 

 

                                  iii.            There is the inexplicable release onto the verandah of a group supposedly “to be taken back to base for interrogation”, but while the only vehicle was full of women and children to go back to the village and the soldiers had no other vehicle.

 

                                  iv.            Not even the most basic of steps – examination of the human remains to see what the pattern of gunshot wounds is, where and from what range – has been undertaken.

 

                                          v.       The High Court recognised that proportionality was a relevant and applicable legal standard at the relevant time. But “no consideration” had been given to its violation “in circumstances where every single person was killed rather than some being wounded”.

 

                                        vi.      Nothing has been identified which could support the thesis that it was necessary and proportionate to shoot at this group of villagers – many of them elderly (a“range of ages” up to 70) – until each and every one of them was dead.

 

                                      vii.      The soldiers had no way of getting villagers, still less injured ones, back to base. They were about to burn the village to the ground. On no basis is proportionality an impossible conclusion for any independent appraiser of the evidence seeking to draw conclusions and contribute to the public interest in truth and reconciliation.

 

                           viii.         The correct position is that the functions of an inquiry are not contingent upon embarking with a satisfaction that “definitive” determinations on questions of fact can be made. There are degrees of clarity and confidence and it would be for the inquiry to state the degree to which it was able to make its findings and conclusions.

 

                               ix.         There are broader public interest considerations which relate to an independent body undertaking the task. These public interest imperatives are not satisfied by gently allowing the matter to drop.

 

  1. The Claimants state that to undertake and follow through an investigation is to identify a process which serves to provide reassurance and rebuilds public confidence.

 

  1. There are 568 organisations in Malaysia who support the investigation that is sought. Their quest raises very strong public interest considerations, which can be seen to demand that the matter not be allowed to rest, especially after so many wholly unsatisfactory previous curtailments.

 

Application for Permission to Appeal filed on 2 October 2012.

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起诉人申请批准上诉摘要

 

1.            四名罹难家属,分别为张玉球,罗亚才,林国和何观娣的代表律师已入禀英国高庭,寻求法庭批准上诉申请,以便让上诉庭针对以下事项作出裁决:

 

  1. 义务:英政府是否有义务对1948年12月发生的峇冬加里屠杀惨案展开听证会;以及
  2. 酌情权:英政府拒绝行使酌情权展开听证会是否合法。

 

2.         罹难家属们在高庭审讯中成功建立案件的基本事实以及英政府必须对射杀峇冬加里无辜村民的苏格兰卫队负上法律责任。

 

3.         义务

a.                     虽然欧洲人权公约与英国人权法令互相存有矛盾之处,但英国高庭却被本土法令和案例约束。唯有通过上诉庭进行上诉才能重新审核高庭先前和被受束缚的裁决,而且是否应按照欧洲人权法院Janowiec的案例进行裁决。

           

b.                     这起案件涉及严重侵犯人权的课题,包括“最基本的权力-生存的权力”。

 

c.         这起案件也牵涉了公众利益,是足以重新考量人权和国际普通法的争执点。

 

4.         酌情权

a.     死者家属要求高庭接受他们可以促使上诉庭从另一个观点来审核英政府行使酌情权的合法性。除此之外,这起案件的课题因涉及公众利益而显得额外重要。

 

b.         这起案件中仍有许多未揭开的答案。它们包括:-

 

i.          强而有力的证据显示那些英军刻意处决无辜村民。

 

ii.            前总检察长史特福。萨顿爵士曾经披露这是一个“无心的错误”。

 

iii.         英政府无法解释为何一群本应被带返营地进行审问的人士却被释放至走廊,但事实上其实只有一辆载满妇孺的交通工具返回村庄,而英军并没有任何其他交通工具载送男村民。

 

iv.         英政府当局并没有采取最基本的尸体检验程序,包括检验枪伤的伤口形状,位置以及开枪的距离。

 

v.         高庭承认应用相成比例的武力在那个时候是相关而且是适用的法定标准,但是英政府却对苏格兰卫队“宁愿将他们处死而不伤害他们”的手法视而不见,并没有给予适当的考量。

 

vi.         没有任何证据支持苏格兰卫队需要和应该开枪射杀那群村民。大部分的村民都是年长者(来自不同的年龄层,有个村民更已是70岁),而且没有必要射杀每一个村民至死。

 

vii.        那些士兵并没有将村民带回营地,而且还将村庄烧毁。因此任何独立的裁决都可能根据现有的证据达到射杀至死的行为根本是使用不相称比例的武力。唯有通过独立的调查,涉及公众利益的真相与和解目标才能达成。

 

viii.       这起案件已获得广大的社会关注,必须由一个独立的组织对此冤案进行调查。

 

5.         死者家属表示要求英政府展开一项独立调查是为了保障和重建公众的信心。

 

6.         共有568个来自马来西亚的注册社团和非政府组织支持死者家属要求英政府展开独立调查行动。他们代表了马来西亚人的广大意愿,基于这起冤案还有许多未解之处,所以不容许惨案就此草草了结。

 

寻求上诉批准的申请已于2012年10月2日入禀英国高庭。