BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: UK: Politics  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Education
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Wednesday, 9 October, 2002, 18:45 GMT 19:45 UK
Tories back Blair on Iraq
US jet
A US jet patrol's Iraq's 'no-fly' zone

Tony Blair's stance on Iraq will be backed by the Tories while it remains in the national interest, Conservative foreign affairs spokesman Michael Ancram has said.


Mr Blair and Mr Straw are hell bent on selling Gibraltar out Mr Blair and Mr Straw are hell bent on selling Gibraltar out

Michael Ancram
He said the UK must act within international law under a time-limited United Nations resolution that left Saddam in "no doubt" about the consequences of failing to comply.

The view was backed by defence spokesman Bernard Jenkin as the Tory conference in Bournemouth turned its attentions to defence and foreign policy.

The Tory leadership has come under fire from senior figures, including former Foreign Secretary Malcolm Rifkind, over its "unquestioning" support for Labour's stance on Iraq.

Mugabe's "thugs"

But Mr Jenkin said: "So long as the prime minister is doing the right thing, we recognise that we have a duty to support him."

Michael Ancram
Mr Ancram wants tougher sanctions against Mugabe
He stressed as long as Saddam defied UN resolutions there must be the threat of military action.

Mr Ancram also called on the government to immediately suspend talks over joint sovereignty with Spain for Gibraltar.

And he said the UK had not done enough in response to Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's "thugs".

On Iraq, Mr Ancram said that if sending in weapons inspectors failed to deal with the threat from Saddam Hussein there had to be a "clear and fully developed plan" for military action.

He said he appreciated the concerns of anti-war campaigners but said the threat from Saddam was such that "we must support whatever action is appropriate to achieve it".

Turning to Zimbabwe, Mr Ancram said he had seen the "murder, rape, robbery, famine and ethnic cleansing" in Zimbabwe at first hand on a visit to the country.

"One displaced, broken and desperate black farm worker said simply to me 'don't let the world forget us'.

"We won't. But Mr Blair already has. "He gave great hope to Zimbabweans last year.

"They believed him. They told me so. And that hope has proved false."

EU reform call

The Tories want an extension of sanctions to Mugabe's funders, tighter control of the travel ban on him and his team and the withholding of investment.

In a wide-ranging speech, Mr Ancram said the Tories must help "move Europe away from the mad dash to full integration".

He said full political union should be resisted and that the European Union needed fundamental reform.

"What is needed now is a comprehensive review of the EU.

"An audit into what is working and what is not, what should be changed and what should be discarded," he said.

"There must be no sacred cows, no sealed vaults. Everything must be looked at." 'No shared sovereignty'

Mr Ancram said the government was "hell bent" on sharing sovereignty of Gibraltar with Spain.

He said a Tory government would not be bound by any deal on sharing sovereignty.

Mr Ancram said: "Mr Blair and Mr Straw are hell bent on selling Gibraltar out. "They have surreptitiously agreed in principle to share sovereignty with Spain - they are now cynically trying to browbeat Gibraltar into accepting it."

'Suspend talks'

He said Foreign Secretary Jack Straw must not ignore a referendum being held on the Rock.


a "Trojan horse for anti-American sentiment

Bernard Jenkin on an EU army
"This vote will reflect the passionately held views of the people of Gibraltar ... it simply cannot be ignored.

"The fact is that these talks with Spain have reached a dead end - they should immediately be suspended.

"And any agreement between the two governments, whether in principle or otherwise, should be declared null and void as if it had never existed.

"The people of Gibraltar are British and want to remain British - so long as that is their wish we will never sell them out."

European army

Mr Ancram said Labour's ethical foreign policy had been exposed as a "cynical sham". In his speech, Mr Jenkin attacked cuts in defence spending and vowed that a Conservative government would provide the armed forces with the "manpower and tools" they needed. He said calls for a new European army amounted to a "Trojan horse for anti-American sentiment".


Key stories

Interviews

FEATURES

INTERACTIVE

AUDIO VIDEO

TALKING POINT
See also:

09 Oct 02 | Politics
08 Oct 02 | Politics
09 Oct 02 | England
08 Oct 02 | Politics
08 Oct 02 | Politics
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


E-mail this story to a friend



© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes