Brexiteer ridiculed after complaining UK's Covid lockdown rules break 'European Human Rights' laws

Steve Baker MP

Steve Baker MP - Credit: Getty Images

A Brexiteer has sparked outrage after claiming Boris Johnson's lockdown measures were an infringement of European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) laws.

Steve Baker has raised eyebrows after claiming the prime minister's lockdown measures breached ECHR regulations - the very laws he voted to repeal in 2016.

Baker, a fervent Brexiteer and former chair of parliamentary anti-EU group the ERG, BBC Radio 4's Today programme, said the latest restrictions had been "problematic".

"This is a major infringement on a right to a family life. I'm looking at the European Convention on Human Rights as I speak to you," he said.

"There are various caveats that allow governments to infringe upon the rights for the purposes of protecting public health. 

"But I would like the government to acknowledge just how deeply the government is infringing on people's rights in dealing with this pandemic and ensuring the public we will be returning to the normal situation on Human Rights once the vulnerable are vaccinated."

Baker has been an opponent of the ECHR, which was incorporated into UK domestic law under the Human Rights Act 1998, having voted to repeal it in 2016.

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Twitter users wasted no time in highlighting the irony of Baker's statement.

The New European contributor Andrew Adonis tweeted: "Did I just catch Steve Baker on Today using the European Convention on Human Rights to criticise the lockdown? The same Steve Baker who wants us to repeal the ECHR?"

Writer James Felton responded: "Same Steve Baker that voted against allowing child refugees to be reunited with their families (twice)."

Anti-Brexit campaigner Femi posted: "Steve Baker who pushed for Brexit despite all impact assessments saying it will devastate our economy, and pushed to leave the ECHR (by repealing the Human Rights Act)...Is now demanding an economic impact assessment for lockdown and complaining that it violates the ECHR."

MORE: Vote Leave MP under fire after urging economic assessment of lockdown restrictions but not Brexit

@BriefcaseMike posted: "Right-wing Tory nutjob Steve Baker invoking the Human Rights Act! I just choked on my coffee."

Kate Frances pointed out: "Steve Baker worried about infringement of human rights. He has been very happy to trash the rights of people in this country to have freedom of movement!"

Responding to a tweet about Baker's comments, Nick quipped: "Hard right ERG eurosceptic MP Steve Baker discovers his 'human rights loving inner European'".

Hannah Al-Othman wrote: "Ah yes, Steve Baker, well-known for being a fan of *checks notes* European law."

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