EU to tell Sri Lanka’s LTTE and others why they are called ‘terrorists’

LUXEMBOURG, April 23, 2007 (AFP) – EU foreign ministers agreed on Monday to tell groups and individuals on its terror register why they are listed. The EU has already written to OMPI, recalling “the organisation’s past, notably the attacks that it has been responsible for”, an EU diplomat said. The decision was made in the wake of a ruling last year by Europe’s second-highest court annulling a freeze on the assets of an exiled Iranian opposition group.

The Court of First Instance ruled that the EU had not respected the right to a fair hearing of the People’s Mujahedeen of Iran (OMPI), when it ordered the asset freeze in May 2002.

The EU’s reasoning will be officially published for the groups and individuals for whom it has no address.

Those listed will then have 30 days “to present their arguments” against the decision.

More than 50 organisations and individuals are on the EU terror list, including the Basque separatist group ETA, Sri Lanka’s Tamil Tigers and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas.

It is supposed to be revised every six months but this has not happened because of uncertainty caused by the court ruling.