New anti-terror laws aimed at stopping potential jihadists from travelling abroad have been rushed through the House of Commons.
At least 700 Britons are believed to have flown to Syria or Iraq to join the fight against Bashar al Assad and/or to join ISIS.
The new legislation could also prevent so-called “jihadi brides” from heading to ISIS-held areas.
A key measure will stop people who are subject to a Terror Prevention and Investigation Measure (Tpim) from travelling in and out of the UK.
Airlines will also face civil penalties, including the removal of the right to land in Britain, if they fail to provide passenger, crew and service information.
They have been ordered to comply with a “no-fly list” of individuals barred from travel to the UK because of suspected involvement in terrorist activities.
The measures were rubber-stamped by the Commons on Tuesday night in less than 15 minutes. James Brokenshire, the Security Minister, told MPs: “They will help the Government and law enforcement agencies to keep the country safe from terrorism.”
The Shadow minister, David Hanson, endorsed the Government’s plans, adding: “There is a level of support across the House for these measures.”
The Government also announced that the counter-terror budget would be boosted by £130m.
“The letter makes it clear that the proposals are highly discriminatory, potentially counter-productive, and an Islamophobic assault on the legitimate right of Muslims to practice their faith and live according to their religious values. They also stand to erode further the edifice of civil liberties in the UK, already battered by years of authoritarian legislating.
The proposals, we say, “are in fact simply a continuation of a tried and failed strategy of coercing British Muslims into becoming obedient subjects forcibly assimilated into some assumed mainstream British norm….. You should also not need reminding that the impact of such strategies on Muslims has been devastating. They have ‘otherised’ the whole Muslim community and created a public climate of antipathy towards it that encourages and normalises acts of discrimination, abuse and violence.”
The letter reminds Mr Clegg of his promises both recently and upon assuming the reins of government that the Lib-Dems would act as a restraining influence on the authoritarian tendencies of the Conservatives.
“However, over the course of this Parliament the Tory-led government has repeatedly assaulted our democratic freedoms and liberties and waged an unprecedented assault on the Muslim community in a manner not too dissimilar to the treatment of Jews in pre-war Nazi Germany. We hope that you will be faithful to your pledge and immediately take all necessary steps to ensure that these proposals never make it onto the Statute Book…”