Tag Archive: David Cameron


‘It is not wrong to sell arms’, says David Cameron as he defends sale of weapons to Middle East.

Date: 23rd February 2011

David Cameron last night defied mounting criticism over his arms mission to the Middle East – declaring that Britain has ‘nothing to be ashamed of’ for selling weapons to Arab leaders. The Prime Minister accused his critics of being ‘at odds with reality’ after he was condemned for taking eight arms manufacturers on his tour of the Gulf. They were invited to join his trip despite concerns that British-made equipment had been used by the Gaddafi regime to suppress unrest in Libya.

But yesterday an angry Mr Cameron said he could not understand why anyone would oppose his attempts to boost British defence sales in such a volatile region. In a speech to the Kuwaiti parliament, he admitted that past British governments had miscalculated in their policy of propping up brutal dictators in the region. But his warm words on peace and democracy have been overshadowed by the disclosure that his delegation contains bosses from such arms firms as BAe Systems, Thales UK, Atkins and Qinetiq.

Marking the 20th anniversary of Kuwait’s liberation from Saddam Hussein’s forces, Mr Cameron said: ‘A properly regulated trade in defence is nothing we should be ashamed of. ‘The fact that there are British defence companies on this visit – BAe, Thales and others – is perfectly right in this regard.’ The Foreign Office has already revoked a series of export licences for Libya and Bahrain in the wake of the crackdowns on protesters in those countries. But Mr Cameron said it was right to do business with allies such as Kuwait.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Source:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/feb/17/forest-sell-off-people-power

Date:  Thursday 17 February, 2011.

Forest sell-off: ‘People power’ forced U-turn, say campaigners.

Plans to sell England’s forests attracted cross-party opposition and sparked a public outcry.

Campaigners have hailed the “people power” which has forced the government to abandon plans to privatise England’s public forests. The news that Caroline Spelman, the environment secretary, would announce a halt to the consultation into proposals to sell thousands of hectares of woodland was welcomed by grassroots campaigners and conservation charities. David Cameron heralded the about-turn at prime minister’s questions yesterday, when he stated bluntly that he was unhappy with the policy.

The proposals put out for consultation last month detail measures to dispose of up to 100% of England’s 258,000 hectare public forest estate, which is currently managed by the Forestry Commission, over the next 10 years. They included a £250m sale of leaseholds for commercially valuable forests to timber companies, measures to allow communities, charities and even local authorities to buy or lease woods and plans to transfer well-known “heritage” woods such as the New Forest into the hands of charities. But the proposals attracted cross-party opposition and sparked a public outcry, with critics arguing they threatened public access and wildlife.

Campaign group 38 Degrees started a Save Our Forests petition which attracted more than 532,000 signatures. David Babbs, executive director, said: “Some people say signing petitions and emailing MPs never changes anything, but it did this time. “This is what people power looks like, and over half a million of us are feeling very proud of what we’ve achieved together today. “We will keep watching David Cameron to make sure he keeps his word. But right now it looks like fantastic news for all of us who want to keep our forests safe in public hands for future generations.”

Continue reading