Results 181–200 of 5157 for speaker:Andrew Murrison

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: The right hon. Lady tempts me, but I am going to resist. The US, I believe, is talking about seeking to redeploy 50 servicemen at the moment. I have no information on forts, so I cannot answer that question. As for boots on the ground, we need to be careful. The UK does not have regular boots on the ground in Syria; we do not do that. The hon. Gentleman was right to raise international...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: My right hon. Friend is obviously an expert in such matters. There are two categories of individual: those in detention camps and those in al-Hawl, who are, in the main, the families of detainees. It is important that justice is served as close as possible to any alleged crime, and we are taking that forward with those in the region. As for the minors, it is the Government’s intent that...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I understand the right hon. Lady’s frustration. We must be clear that we cannot act alone and that we have to act with our partners. That is the reality. The Kurds are not being stabbed in the back by the United Kingdom, but US actions are obviously a matter for the US. I hope that my remarks have provided my understanding of the extent and scope of what is in the President’s head, so far...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: The only point I would make about surprise is that President Erdoğan has, of course, threatened this on a number of occasions, and he has previous in relation to Afrin. This has not come out of the blue, but I agree that we need to ensure that we do everything we can to understand our colleagues’ thinking on these matters so that we can act in a relatively joined up way, if possible.

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I cannot give the hon. Gentleman that commitment at the Dispatch Box, but the point has been well made and will be considered. I am sure what he suggests has merit, but we will have to examine it fully.

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: My hon. Friend refers to the forcible repatriation of refugees, and clearly we would strongly oppose such a thing. I made it very clear to the right hon. Member for Islington South and Finsbury (Emily Thornberry) that we would oppose anything that looks like ethnic cleansing or demographic change. All those things are absolutely not appropriate, and we will resist them. My hon. Friend will...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I do not think we are into article 5 territory. We continue to support the SDF and the coalition. The principal intent here is the fight against Daesh, which is a clear and present danger that threatens us all. We will do everything in our power to ensure that fight continues and is unaffected by this latest news. It is important that we keep our eye on the ball in that respect. As the hon....

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: My right hon. Friend’s point is well made. I cannot give him that assurance because I am not the US, but I am sure his point will have been heard by our interlocutors. He refers to our allies in the coalition and elsewhere, and he will be aware that we are working very closely with our E3 partners—probably more closely than we have for some considerable time. Some might think that is...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I have alluded to our support for the humanitarian situation. I suspect I will be quizzed on this further when I appear before the Select Committee on International Development in a few minutes’ time. I am proud of the contribution made by the British people. We are in the top few countries in our support for the humanitarian situation in Syria. I am also proud that, by 2020, we will have...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: Turkey is a major NATO ally, and it is a good friend of this country. We have some leverage with Turkey, as a friend and as a partner, and my hon. Friend will understand that this is currently in the diplomatic space. He is tempting me to make all sorts of contingency preparations, which I certainly will not do at the Dispatch Box. This is clearly a dynamic situation, and we will have to...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: Of course, the SDF is part of the coalition against Daesh. I admire our Kurdish friends and partners enormously, and our posture has not changed at all. We are talking here about the possibility of Turkey moving into north-west Syria—we do not know how far that incursion is going to be—and the fact that the US has said that in those circumstances it would withdraw 50 of its people from...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I am grateful to my right hon. Friend for that. I disagree with his analogies, although we will be able to discuss that in some depth, perhaps when we have more time. The Government have been clear where we are on this: we would oppose any incursion by our good friend and NATO ally Turkey into Syria. He is tempting me to speculate on what we might do in the event that this happens. A lot of...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I am not sure which election the hon. Gentleman is referring to, but it certainly would not be the UK Government’s job to interfere in US elections, presidential or otherwise. He has rightly referred to opposition to this particular thing in Washington, and I am sure that, as his voice is no doubt influential on the Hill, he will be listened to carefully.

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: We do support the SDF, which is an important part of the coalition—it is clearly central to it. As I said in my earlier remarks, the worry is that this recent news, if it is carried forward, will detract attention from Daesh along the Euphrates river. That would be extremely bad for the stability of Syria and for the rest of us.

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I am grateful to the hon. Lady for that. She talks about being the best, but I think we probably are that. If we look at the sum total of our contribution to this, we see that it is extraordinary, and I am really proud of it. I am proud of it on behalf of my constituents and hers, because they are the ones who ultimately provide this contribution—she and I do not. If she looks at the...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: Yes, we are obviously responding to events and what we are being told, but the information available to us is that this is envisaged as being relatively modest. I have to say to my hon. Friend, whose experience in these matters is broad and deep, that he will know that the matter is extremely kinetic and may very well change. However, we have to be consistent; we oppose any move into Syrian...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: We want to make sure that autocrats and demagogues are not dominant in this conflict. The hon. Gentleman talks as though action has been taken, but my understanding is that that is not the case yet, so we are talking about what might happen. What we have done is say that we do not believe that what has been discussed is the right way forward. We believe we have to ensure that Turkey does not...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I think I can give that reassurance. As I said in response to an earlier question, we do not have boots on the ground. Let me be clear: that means we do not have combat soldiers on the ground. I am grateful for the opportunity that my hon. Friend has given me to clarify that point. We have others, as part of the coalition, who engage, for example, in training, and across the middle east we...

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: I thank the hon. Lady for her comments. She serves with great distinction as chairman of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. No doubt conversations will be had over the next few days and will particularly note Turkey’s status in NATO.

Us Troop Withdrawal from Northern Syria (8 Oct 2019)

Andrew Murrison: Yes, of course. My hon. Friend will be aware, because he knows how these things work, that those conversations happen all the time. There can be no room for confusion in the minds of our Turkish interlocutors as to where we stand on this matter. We clearly have something of a privileged position with our good friends the Turks, given their status as a firm ally of this country and as a member...


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