Results 1–20 of 875 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Graham Jones

Schools: National Funding Formula: General Election Campaign: Abuse and Intimidation (14 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I want to make a few points. We have to be defenders of free speech, and debates that do not end with a conclusion from both sides or are curtailed for whatever reason cannot be described as free speech. Debates are often curtailed because of abuse, and I believe that free speech is diminishing in this country because of the amount of abuse that is handed out—on social media, by and...

Schools: National Funding Formula: General Election Campaign: Abuse and Intimidation (14 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I think we are sometimes hesitant to call out abuse. Sometimes the volume can be so great that we walk away. I hope that the Government review will look into the cumulative impact of low-volume abuse, how we manage free speech, and how people, as my hon. Friend suggests, sometimes recoil from engaging. As he says, when Members who feel abused come together and make a strong point, it offers a...

Schools: National Funding Formula: General Election Campaign: Abuse and Intimidation (14 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I am enjoying the hon. Gentleman’s arguments. Does he share my view that free speech arises where a debate is able to reach a conclusion without being interrupted or stopped by abuse, and where such a democratic debate is based on discourse and an exchange of views?

Schools: National Funding Formula: General Election Campaign: Abuse and Intimidation (14 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I am listening intently to the points the right hon. Gentleman is making, and he refers to the point I made earlier, but does he not accept that we are in danger of losing a degree of freedom of speech because of bullying online? It is simply not possible to engage in a broad-minded and open debate when a volume of people insist on handing out personal abuse.

Schools: National Funding Formula: General Election Campaign: Abuse and Intimidation (14 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I am simply not going to disagree with the point the right hon. Gentleman has just made.

Schools: National Funding Formula: General Election Campaign: Abuse and Intimidation (14 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: My hon. Friend is making a powerful speech and some powerful points. When these debates occur online, there needs to be some clarity, as there is a difference between free speech and abuse. The point he is alluding to is that abuse is often dressed up as free speech, but when there is such an intervention, we have to say that abuse is not free speech.

Local Housing Need (14 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I just think the Government’s policy is a shambles. In the Rossendale part of my constituency, the Government have imposed a target of some 5,000 properties, and I presume they will propose another target, yet in the other half of my constituency there are 2,000 empty properties. There are 750,000 empty properties in the country. Nothing has been said about that. We have had no...

Violence in Rakhine State (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: Over the past six years, the British public have witnessed the murderous persecution of the Rohingya in Rakhine province. At the same time, they have turned on their television screens and heard some of the Burmese Buddhists using language that suggests that the Rohingya are almost subhuman. We have seen that persecution going on. Given that we have given some £80 million a year in DFID...

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I thank everyone who attended the debate, which has been helpful and is timely, given the situation that developed over the summer and the events that led up to it. As I mentioned, it is important, not just for the global interest but for our constituents, that the United Kingdom takes a greater interest in Latin America. I asked the Minister about the drugs epidemic on our streets,...

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the Venezuelan Government have run deficits in 15 of the last 17 years? Evo Morales and the Bolivian Government have run surpluses in virtually all those years. There are two distinct, different economic answers in those countries.

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: Will the hon. Gentleman give way?

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I have a simple question. Perhaps I am repeating what my colleagues have asked, but will the hon. Gentleman tell me what actions the current Government have taken against the Venezuelan regime?

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I beg to move, That this House has considered the political situation in Venezuela. It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Stringer, and I am grateful for this timely debate. I do not often speak about Latin America, but it is registered in the “Dod’s” directory as one of my interests. I am a long-standing member of the all-party parliamentary British-Latin...

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I am grateful for the hon. Lady’s intervention. I say to her that it is the Government—her party—that are in power, and I am asking the current Government to tackle the situation on the streets of the United Kingdom. I can speak for myself and I condemn the regime, as I have done. I want to turn briefly to the economic and political situation. I asked the House of Commons...

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: My right hon. Friend is absolutely right. It is a failed authoritarian Communist state, but are not all Communist states authoritarian in their outlook? It is certainly a basket case. I do not need to elaborate on the stories from Venezuela that we have all witnessed over the summer and before. Recent political events have been condemned by all—the UN, the EU, the Inter-Parliamentary...

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I, and Members of this House, do condemn the actions of the Maduro Government. My hon. Friend alludes to the point that we must not conflate power and the powerless. These are the decisions of those in power, not of those who are powerless—the protestors—and it is the regime that we should condemn, not the people of Venezuela.

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: The response from the Labour party Front-Bench Members has been a condemnation, and I am pleased with the words put forward by them in condemning this. I reiterate that this is the Government’s responsibility. They won an election; it is now for them to resolve this issue and for us, as Opposition Members, to put pressure on them. Let us not conflate the two. The humanitarian situation...

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: I will give way to my Lancashire neighbour.

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: The hon. Gentleman raises a very important point. I cannot cover all aspects of the issue in this debate, but the misery of those who have had to flee Venezuela to neighbouring countries is considerable. I think we underestimate the numbers involved and are not fully aware of the scale of the problem of those refugees who have had to flee for their own safety into neighbouring countries and...

Venezuela: Political Situation — [Graham Stringer in the Chair] (5 Sep 2017)

Graham Jones: My right hon. Friend is absolutely right; it is probably the most mismanaged country in the world. As a result, it is experiencing a brain drain: those who are educated are leaving Venezuela, because the regime is strangling intellectuals’ careers and the economy, and because their human rights are being undermined and they are being persecuted for taking part in demonstrations. Many of...


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