Designation of international agreements for purposes of section 52 of Investigatory Powers Act 2016

Part of Crime (Overseas Production Orders) Bill [Lords] – in the House of Commons at 2:15 pm on 30th January 2019.

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Photo of Ben Wallace Ben Wallace Minister of State (Home Office) (Security) 2:15 pm, 30th January 2019

I understand what the right hon. Gentleman is saying, and I do not question his heartfelt desire to ensure that we keep people safe, but actions have consequences. He does not have to believe me when I say this, but the United States has indicated to the Government that if we attach strings to the treaty in the way that the Lords amendment would, the treaty will not progress. He does not have to believe me; he does not have to believe the United States; he can decide whether he thinks the United States will change its position or not, but let me tell him my reading of it. I have met representatives from the US Department of Justice, along with my officials and representatives from our embassy, and looked at the political situation in the Senate—I live in the real world; that is not necessarily how I would vote—and I am living with the challenge of balancing those realities, as any hon. Member would do. If these amendments, including that of the right hon. Gentleman, go through, they will jeopardise the treaty. I have set out clearly what the consequence would be if the treaty were jeopardised, and no amount of “I wish it wasn’t” will change that simple fact.