7/7 victims launch legal action against govt

A group of survivors and relatives of victims of London’s 7 July 2005 bombings are to take legal action against the government to force an inquiry into the events of that day.

The group is being represented on a pro bono basis by London’s Oury Clark Solicitors, a 20-lawyer white collar crime boutique.

The firm released a pre-action protocol letter to the Home Secretary today setting out the legal case for the need to hold an independent inquiry, open to public scrutiny to allow for participation from the bereaved and survivors.

Their letter outlines their intention to pursue a Judicial Review if the Government continues to refuse to grant such an inquiry.

Solicitor advocate and senior partner James Oury said: “There needs to be a forum away from the executive to look at things in an objective way, and find out if there was something that could have been done and how we could have improve those processes in future. The government has said that Britain could face a terrorist threat for a generation, so there is a genuine public interest at stake here.”

Oury argued that there is continued uncertainty over the events leading up to the attacks on 7 July 2005, and that an independent inquiry was an appropriate way to address this concern.

“Our clients have endured unimaginable suffering and it is unfair and inappropriate for the Government to force our clients into an adversarial, costly and complex court setting – a litigation corner”.

The group argue that the State has failed with its obligation to protect the right to life, citing former Home secretary Charles Clarke’s claim that two of the bombers were ‘clean skins’, meaning that they were not known to police and intelligence agencies previously, which as a result of the crevice Trial into Pakistani terrorists suspects concluded in April last year, was revealed as untrue.

It concludes that the intelligence and scrutiny Committees report published by government is therefore imperfect, and that in order to be seen to be accountable an inquiry is in the public interest.