United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:15 pm on 21st March 2011.

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Photo of Elfyn Llwyd Elfyn Llwyd Shadow PC Spokesperson (Wales), Plaid Cymru Westminster Leader, Shadow PC Spokesperson (Constitution), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Foreign Affairs), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Home Affairs), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Justice), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Defence), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) 6:15 pm, 21st March 2011

The hon. Gentleman makes my point. I am trying to be fairly succinct as we have only a few minutes, but he is right. That is of great concern. One hopes the Arab League will shortly convert its support into something more tangible; otherwise it will be a propaganda coup for Gaddafi and his type. That is a vital point.

I hope that shortly we will be there merely as peacemakers. I do not want to see Colonel Gaddafi in any form of control, but if he is to be removed, it must be by his own people, not by western firepower and intervention. The Arab spring has so far shown peaceful success in Tunisia and Egypt. Egypt’s new constitution received 77% support yesterday. However, other protests in Bahrain and Yemen have met with significant violence, including Saudi troops breaching Bahrain’s sovereignty. I share the concerns of my hon. Friend Caroline Lucas, who made the point about arms sales, but I dare say that is a debate for another day.

Suffice it to say that within the strict remit of the resolution, we in Plaid Cymru and our friends in the Scottish National party are prepared to stand by and support today’s motion. We hope there will be no mission creep and no striding beyond the strict wording of the resolution. I echo what has been said by others: it is not an easy task. It will be difficult for the Prime Minister and the Government, but in that task I wish him and the Government well.