Schedule 1 - Excluded offences for the purposes of section 6

Part of Overseas Operations (Service Personnel and Veterans) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:30 am on 20th October 2020.

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Photo of Johnny Mercer Johnny Mercer Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence) 10:30 am, 20th October 2020

No one disputes the seriousness of torture. I reiterate that our commitments against that are not diluted in any way. All we are seeking to do is to restore the primacy of things like the Geneva convention and the law of armed conflict, and to protect our service men and women from the nature of lawfare that has been so pernicious over the years. I understand people’s views on it, and at first inspection I understand why people have concerns, but the reality is that we have to deal with the situation with which we have been presented. If we are going to protect our people, this is a difficult part of it. As I have outlined, nobody can in any way be legitimately accused of sexual offences in the discharge of their duties, and that is why it is in the Bill.