Leaving the European Union – <i>Statement</i> | Lords debates

My Lords, this Statement is both vacuous in content and indeed in language. The truth is that the only important sentence is the one that reads:

“As expected, President Juncker maintained the EU’s position that they will not reopen the withdrawal agreement”.

Where is the hard evidence that the European Union is willing to depart from that position? If it were persuaded to do so, what concessions will the Government be willing to make in return?

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Leaving the European Union – <i>Statement</i> | Lords debates

My Lords, this Statement is both vacuous in content and indeed in language. The truth is that the only important sentence is the one that reads:

“As expected, President Juncker maintained the EU’s position that they will not reopen the withdrawal agreement”.

Where is the hard evidence that the European Union is willing to depart from that position? If it were persuaded to do so, what concessions will the Government be willing to make in return?

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Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty – <i>Statement</i> | Lords debates

Will the Minister join me in putting aside questions of blame and responsibility, and consider the nature of nuclear arms control? It can reasonably be said that its architecture is crumbling before our eyes. It is not just the INF treaty; it is the Iran nuclear treaty, the prospects for renewal of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty between the United States and Russia—which are generally now described as very unlikely—and the fact that the comprehensive test-ban treaty, first available in September 1996, is still not yet in force. We have in front of us, in 2020, the next review conference of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty. Would the Minister like to share with us precisely what position the United Kingdom is going to take in 2020 on the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, given that all around us it appears that nuclear arms control is disappearing before our eyes?

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Military Equipment: Sales – <i>Question</i> | Lords debates

My Lords, what monitoring does the Ministry of Defence carry out in relation to arrangements such as those between Leonardo and the storage company? In particular, given that the national interest may be at stake, what legal advice have the Government taken on whether or not it would be appropriate to seek an injunction against the auction proposed for 6 February?

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Defence Safety Fire Authority: Fire Safety Review – <i>Question</i> | Lords debates

My Lords, we can be grateful that changes have been made, but how was it that the circumstances were allowed to arise in which the committee said there had been a lack of priority afforded to fire safety, major weaknesses and an unacceptable degradation of barracks? We ask our young men and women to risk life and limb in action. Surely we can go out of our way to ensure that they are safe in their own barracks.

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