Aamer Anwar - Not Guilty of Contempt

Aamer Anwar, family and friends, Edinburgh

Aamer Anwar outside the High Court, Edinburgh

Full Statement issued by Aamer Anwar, following the decision in his Contempt of Court Hearing at the High Court of Justiciary, Edinburgh, before their Lordships Osbourne, Kingarth, & Wheatley.

"If there is one right prized above all others in a democracy, it is freedom of speech. Lawyers, like everybody else, enjoy that fundamental right.

As a defence lawyer I never set out to win a popularity contest but I was taught it is a lawyer's duty to fearlessly represent his client, no matter what crime he is accused of or how demonised he is by society.

As our Government criminalises communities and creates 'thought crime', Lawyers still have a responsibility to be the guardians of our liberties and to campaign against injustice.

Everyone likes to talk of the independence of the Judiciary and Prosecution, but an independent Defence able to speak without fear of recrimination by the State is as essential for freedom and justice.

I welcome today's finding of no contempt and hope I am allowed to get on with doing my job.

I would like to thank my lawyers, my family and friends and the thousands of individuals and organisations, including SACC and Stop the War, who have supported me through 9 difficult months.

They have shown what solidarity means in practice. Thank you so much."