Amal Clooney, a well-known human rights lawyer married to George Clooney, has resigned as Britain’s special envoy for media freedom over the passage of a “deplorable” Brexit bill.
Clooney made the important move thanks to the Internal Market Bill, which gives the British government the power to repeal parts of the British Brexit agreement in the EU withdrawal agreement and which some say signals the government’s intention to violate international law and abandons significant parts of the Brexit agreement.
I was horrified to learn that the government intended to pass legislation – the internal market bill, which, if passed, would, in the government̵
“I was also concerned to note the government’s position that although ‘it is an established principle of international law that a state is obliged to perform its treaty obligations in good faith, the United Kingdom Parliament is a sovereign domestic law and can legislate, which infringes the contractual obligations of the United Kingdom. “
“Although the government assumes that the planned violation of international law is ‘concrete and limited’, it is deplorable for Britain to speak out of its intention to violate an international treaty signed by the prime minister less than a year ago,” the letter continued.
Clooney resigned because “he was not assured that any change of position was imminent, I have no alternative but to resign,” adding: “I am disappointed to have to do so because I have always been proud of the reputation of The United Kingdom as a champion of the international legal order and the culture of fair play for which it is known. Unfortunately, however, it has now become untenable for me, as Special Envoy, to call on other countries to comply with and implement international obligations, while the United Kingdom declares that it does not intend to do so alone. “
Clooney’s resignation, seen as a direct rebuke to Boris Johnson’s government, is the latest in noise over the bill
This week, Lord Richard Keane, the UK government’s legal officer for Scotland, resigned over his opposition to the bill, and last week the government’s top legal adviser, Jonathan Jones, withdrew from the preliminary publication.
“It is humiliating that the UK’s special envoy for media freedom feels unable to continue his role. This shows that by threatening to violate international law, instead of ending Brexit as we were promised, the government is tarnishing the UK’s reputation around the world, “Chris Matheson, the shadow media minister, told the Guardian.