Amendment 25

Part of Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill - Committee (Continued) – in the House of Lords at 11:15 pm on 15th July 2019.

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Photo of Lord Black of Brentwood Lord Black of Brentwood Conservative 11:15 pm, 15th July 2019

My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lords who supported this amendment. As the remarks from my noble friend Lord Lexden made clear, this is an issue on which we have been pressing for many years now. I remember well his debate in Grand Committee four years ago, yet no progress has been made. I am grateful to my noble friend the Minister for his comments. Yes, indeed, a legislative consent Motion was declined at the time but no real reason was given for that and none has been given since, which I do not think is satisfactory when we are talking about an area of law of such importance as libel and involving such fundamental human rights as those of freedom of expression. This is an area to which I fear we will have to return. I will take up my noble friend Lord Duncan’s offer to meet to talk about how we might make progress in this area. In the meantime, I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment 25 withdrawn.