Page last updated at 22:00 GMT, Monday, 13 October 2008 23:00 UK

'Sleepwalk' demo over 42-day plan

City Square, Leeds
Police can currently question terror suspects for 28 days before charge

Protesters against the government's now shelved 42-day detention limit for terror suspects walked through Leeds in a "mass sleepwalk".

Amnesty International campaigners vocalised their opposition and wore dressing gowns and slippers, and clutched pillows and blankets.

The move symbolises the organisation's belief that the UK is "sleepwalking into an assault on our human rights".

On Monday the House of Lords rejected the 42-day detention bill.

Amnesty said it chose Leeds to relaunch its campaign to target MPs who voted for 42-day in June, but voted against Tony Blair's earlier plan for a 90-day limit.

What kind of world we are setting up with this kind of draconian legislation
Rachel North, London bombings survivor

Yorkshire region has a high proportion of MPs who fall into this category.

The march finished at Hi Fi Club where a film against the extension was shown.

Amnesty UK director Kate Allen, said: "There's a real danger that people in Britain are sleepwalking into an assault on our human rights."

London bombings survivor Rachel North, who was also on the march and spoke at the screening, said: "I wanted to support this demonstration because I think it makes a point in a very graphic and clear way.

"I think we do need to think about what kind of world we are setting up with this kind of draconian legislation."

The government later said it had decided to drop the detention extension from the Counter Terrorism Bill after the defeat in the House of Lords.

Peers began debating the Bill's detailed committee stage last week and rejected it 308 votes to 118 on Monday.

Ministers had argued the new maximum detention period - an extension from the current 28 days - was vital to allow the security services to deal with increasingly complex terror plots.


SEE ALSO
Ministers shelve 42-day detention
13 Oct 08 |  UK Politics

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FROM OTHER NEWS SITES
Guardian Unlimited Falconer leads assault on 42-day plan - 31 mins ago
Yorkshire Post 'Sleepwalk' protest As the Lords voted against the 42-day detention limit, dozens of Amnesty International supporters donned pyjamas for a "mass sleepwalk" in Leeds in protest against the measure. - 38 mins ago
Burnley Express Amnesty stages 'sleepwalk' protest as Lords vote - 4 hrs ago
Rye and Battle Observer Amnesty stages 'sleepwalk' protest as Lords vote - 4 hrs ago



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