The move towards legislation: chronology
- 2008-2011: Civil cases arose in which the government argued that security-sensitive information needed to remain secret. Among the cases, in Binyam Mohamed the claimant used a 'Norwich Pharmacal' application to attempt to compel government to release information that would enable him to defend himself in terrorism related proceedings brought against him in the US. In Al Rawi, several former Guantanamo detainees sued the Security Service and other state authorities, arguing that there had been British complicity in their detention and torture. The government wanted to use closed proceedings but the courts held that this was not permitted under the common law.
- 6 July 2010: The Government announces it will prepare a Green Paper to look at legislative options.
- 19 October 2011: The Green Paper is published and public consultation begins. Written responses may be sent to the Cabinet Office until 6 January 2012.
- 8 December 2011: The parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights (JCHR) announces its Inquiry into the Green Paper. It accepts written responses until 20 January 2012.
- February 2012: The Cabinet Office publishes 84 out of the 90 responses it has received, and a summary of the remaining 6 for which they did not receive permission to publish in full. The JCHR begins hearing oral evidence.
- 27 March 2012: The Joint Committee on Human Rights publishes its report on the Justice and Security Green Paper.
- 9 May 2012: Queen's Speech indicates that the Justice and Security Bill will be laid before Parliament this session. It appears that there will not be a White Paper on the proposals.
"My Government will introduce legislation to strengthen oversight of the security and intelligence agencies. This will also allow courts, through the limited use of closed proceedings, to hear a greater range of evidence in national security cases."