Britain insists on final say over jail votes

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Parliament was on a collision course with European judges last night after the Justice Secretary insisted it would have the final say on prisoner votes.

Chris Grayling attempted to buy the government more time in its long-running legal battle by announcing that a joint committee of both Houses will look at the issue. He stressed parliament was “sovereign” and had the power to defy the European Court of Human Rights.

The approach was branded “inadequate” by prisoners’ lawyers, who accused the government of trying to stall.

Former policing minister Nick Herbert urged the coalition to go further by withdrawing from the ECHR’s jurisdiction altogether.