Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:35 pm on 18th March 2003.

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Photo of Mr Teddy Taylor Mr Teddy Taylor Conservative, Rochford and Southend East 6:35 pm, 18th March 2003

I would not question that in any way—of course Germany and France provided materials, and the Soviet Union and the United States did so as well. I am simply saying that, in arguing that here is a bad state doing evil things, we should remember that lots of other countries—including the United States, Russia and France—were involved in providing such material. It would be very wrong indeed not to accept some degree of responsibility.

My second point concerns our responsibilities in international law. The Government's biological Green Paper states that there was an "internationally legally binding instrument", and that

"those at every level responsible for any breach of international law will be held personally accountable."

That refers to the export of biological and toxic materials. The danger is that we are throwing away a great deal, and that, to some degree, we might be responsible for such matters. It is totally wrong to say that some people in the world are good and some are bad, because we have a great deal of responsibility for them.

There is a great feeling among us that we are going to intervene, improve matters and restore democracy, freedom and liberty, but where is the evidence that such intervention has been successful in the past? For example, a great deal has been said about Afghanistan, a country that I know a little about, but can we say that things there are much better as a result of the intervention that took place? Rather, it is a pathetic country, run by a group of people who have no democratic responsibility whatever.