Call on the UK Government to publish 'The Third Direction'

Working with Privacy International, Reprieve has discovered the existence of a secret policy, or 'direction', from Downing Street. We know it concerns covert activities being conducted right now by Britain’s intelligence agencies, but that’s all we know – for now.

It is called ‘The Third Direction’.

The first two directions concern torture and cyber surveillance – issues which clearly have huge implications for human rights. The Third Direction is entirely shrouded in secrecy.

We’re worried that The Third Direction may give our Government license to violate fundamental human rights. We don’t yet know what it relates to, but it could be one of several things – including the UK’s use of lethal force, incommunicado detention, or extreme interrogation techniques overseas.

We understand that some details of operations, operatives or other sensitive matters may need to be kept confidential in the interests of national security. But blanket secrecy of an entire area of law and activity makes it more likely that the Government will make mistakes or become involved in grave abuses – and get away with it.

Public scrutiny of the government is an essential part of British democracy. That’s why we’re calling on Theresa May to open up about The Third Direction.

Can you sign our petition and call on the government to publish the Third Direction?

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