LIBERAL Democrats in Blaydon constituency have called on Labour MP David Anderson to apologise for his party’s support for the invasion of Iraq.
Speaking at a meeting of members, Peter Maughan, Lib Dem Parliamentary candidate for Blaydon, said, “Five years ago, the Labour Government led Britain into the war in Iraq. The Conservatives were the cheerleaders for military action. And MPs from both parties attacked the Liberal Democrats for our opposition to the invasion.
“It is now clear that the war in Iraq and the occupation of the country were the worst decisions taken by Britain in foreign policy in living memory. And Mr Anderson, despite claiming to be opposed to the invasion, has backed the continued occupation of Iraq.
“Five years on from the start of the invasion, 175 British troops have lost their lives, £7 billion of our money has been lost on this appalling venture and, according to some estimates, 600,000 Iraqis have lost their lives as a result.
“David Anderson should apologise to the people of Blaydon for his support of this disastrous military occupation.
“The remaining British troops in Iraq are not serving a useful purpose. The Government are asking our brave men and women to put their lives at risk for no gain for either our country or the world at large. Despite assurances by Gordon Brown that our troops will be coming home, they are still in Iraq.
“I am calling on David Anderson to join the Liberal Democrats in urging the Government to set a timetable for the full withdrawal of the remaining UK troops from Iraq.”
“Next week there will be a vote in Parliament calling for a full inquiry into the origins and conduct of the Iraq war. I urge Mr Anderson to join the Liberal Democrats in voting to hold this inquiry. Lessons must be learnt so the mistakes of Iraq are never made again.”