Monday, June 15, 2009

Scottish National Party press release

Iraq inquiry must not be held in secret

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Commenting on reports that Gordon Brown will announce an inquiry into the war in Iraq this week, SNP Westminster leader and Defence spokesperson, Angus Robertson MP has demanded assurances that the long-awaited inquiry will not be held in secret.

The SNP have led demands for an inquiry into the Iraq war, and secured the first substantive debate in October 2006 – at that time the vote was narrowly lost by just 25 votes – with 12 Labour rebels. It was backed by all Tories and Liberal Democrats.

Mr Robertson said:

“Gordon Brown is on a collision course if he thinks people will accept a secret inquiry into the Iraq war.

“Any meaningful inquiry must be open and accessible so that the families who lost loved ones serving in Iraq, those people who protested against the war, and all of us who are paying for it, get the answers we are owed.

“There is also something quite distasteful in the way Gordon Brown is using the Iraq inquiry timetable to cynically boost his faltering leadership. It is one step forward two steps back with this prime minister – last week he was talking about constitutional renewal, and now he is planning to keep the inquiry into the biggest foreign policy disaster in modern times a secret.

“The claim that the war was about weapons of mass destruction was a blatant lie, a mere cover story unsupported by the facts, which has cost the lives of thousands of civilians and hundreds of our brave soldiers.

“The SNP have been pressing for years on this issue, and the UK Government must tell us the truth right now.”


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