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US-UK Special Relationship

Oral Answers to Questions — Foreign and Commonwealth Office – in the House of Commons on 25th June 2019.

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Photo of Stephen Metcalfe Stephen Metcalfe Conservative, South Basildon and East Thurrock

What recent progress the Government have made in strengthening the UK’s special relationship with the US.

Photo of Jeremy Hunt Jeremy Hunt Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

As it happens, we are on the same topic. The state visit of President Trump was a tremendous success, although the absence of the Leader of the Opposition from the state banquet was noted but not regretted.

Photo of Stephen Metcalfe Stephen Metcalfe Conservative, South Basildon and East Thurrock

I am sure my right hon. Friend will therefore agree that those who tried to disrupt and denigrate the recent state visit of the President of the United States were deliberately and shockingly trying to damage our special relationship, and betray what the President has rightly called the greatest alliance in history.

Photo of Jeremy Hunt Jeremy Hunt Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

My hon. Friend is absolutely right. Every day I walk up the Foreign Office staircase and pass a bust of one of our greatest Foreign Secretaries, Earnest Bevin, who was both a Labour Foreign Secretary and one of the founders of NATO. What a betrayal of his remarkable legacy to have a Labour leader who takes money from Iranian state TV and is a friend of terrorists.

Photo of Vincent Cable Vincent Cable Leader of the Liberal Democrats

President Trump made it clear that the special intelligence sharing arrangements with the UK might be cancelled if the British Government persisted with their compromised arrangements with Huawei on 5G. How have the Government responded to that threat?

Photo of Jeremy Hunt Jeremy Hunt Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

By saying two things: we will never do anything that will compromise our intelligence-sharing relationship with the United States and we will take all such decisions in the British national interest.