More could have been done to solve the cri­sis in Syria

Rutherglen Reformer - - News -

Ruther­glen MP Mar­garet Fer­rier says more could have been done to solve the cri­sis in Syria with­out re­sort­ing to mil­i­tary in­ter­ven­tion.

The SNP mem­ber was speak­ing af­ter last week’s vote in the Com­mons which took Bri­tain into war against Is­lamic State of Iraq and the Le­vant (ISIL) in the Mid­dle East­ern coun­try.

“My party de­cided its po­si­tion would be to op­pose the mo­tion for air strikes in Syria,”she said.

“But it wouldn’t have mat­tered to me what the party line was go­ing to be – I would have voted against mil­i­tary ac­tion any­way.”

“I have al­ways been pro hu­man rights and a sup­porter of CND – any­thing that promotes peace – so it is part of my ethos,”she said.

And Ms Fer­rier main­tains that the there has been an over­whelm­ing level of sup­port for her po­si­tion on the vote from lo­cal peo­ple who con­tacted her.

“Around 95 per cent of those who have con­tacted me urged me to op­pose air strikes.

“So I am con­fi­dent that I have rep­re­sented my con­stituents in the right way,”added the mem­ber for Ruther­glen and Hamil­ton West.

And Ms Fer­rier says that lo­cal Mus­lims do not sup­port the terror at­tacks com­mit­ted by ISIL or any other ex­trem­ist groups.

“Those I have spo­ken with are as ap­palled as we are at what they do,” she added.

“The Mus­lim com­mu­nity here make a valu­able con­tri­bu­tion to our so­ci­ety,”she said.

She was also dis­ap­pointed that PM David Cameron re­fused to apol­o­gise for call­ing anti war MPs“ter­ror­ist sym­pa­this­ers”.

“It was an ap­palling thing to say and clearly un­true. And we gave him many chances to apol­o­gise; but it wasn’t forth­com­ing,”said Ms Fer­rier.

Labour MSP James Kelly, mean­while, de­fended his party’s de­ci­sion to al­low a free vote on the mo­tion.

“This was a huge is­sue in the coun­try with strong views ex­pressed on ei­ther side.

“Labour were right to hold a free vote to re­flect the mag­ni­tude of the is­sue and strong views on ei­ther side within the party,”he said.

“The strong speeches by Jeremy Cor­byn and Hilary Benn con­trib­uted to the qual­ity and breadth of the de­bate in the House of Com­mons.”

Ruther­glen MSP Mr Kelly said that he was hor­ri­fied by the Paris at­tacks and the fact that in­no­cent peo­ple were bru­tally mur­dered while en­joy­ing a night out.

“I understand those who sup­port a po­si­tion of a need to make a mil­i­tary re­sponse af­ter such hor­rific at­tacks.

“How­ever, I was not con­vinced by the ar­gu­ments in favour of making air strikes against ISIL in Syria.

“And the con­duct of SNP MPs like Alex Sal­mond in at­tack­ing Hilary Benn by say­ing he let his fa­ther (Tony Benn) down was shame­ful,”Mr Kelly added.

Mar­garet Fer­rier MP

James Kelly MSP

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.