European Parliament asked to back Blair impeachment case

10 January 2005
"Blair must face the consequences of his actions"

Scottish National Party MEP Alyn Smith has today called on the President of the European Parliament to decide if he will allow a written declaration calling on the Parliament to back the impeachment of Tony Blair to go forward.

Mr Smith and others tabled the Written Declaration (similar to an early day motion at Westminster) on 23 November, yet it has been referred to the President for approval. The SNP/Plaid Cymru group at Westminster has set in motion an impeachment process of the Prime Minister on charges of misleading Parliament over the war in Iraq and the non-existence of Weapons of Mass Destruction.

The written declaration will allow MEPs from other countries to recognise and lend their support to the impeachment process.

Alyn Smith MEP said:

"The impeachment process is of major importance in the United Kingdom, and it is right that this house should be aware of it and support it. The terms of the declaration are rational, logical and sensible, and I hope that the President will allow this Declaration to come before the other MEPs as I know substantial support exists in this house for the process underway at Westminster."

"To refuse this Declaration would be a grave infringement of my rights of free expression as a Member of this House, and I will challenge any negative decision. I'm supporting my colleagues fighting in the London Parliament, and I'm confident MEPs from all across Europe will also, given the chance."

Commenting on the case for impeachment, leader of the SNP Alex Salmond MP stated

"There can be fewer greater allegations than to be accused of taking the country to war based on a lie. The Prime Minister misled Parliament and he misled the people of the United Kingdom. Even the Chancellor doesn't believe a word he says now.

The Prime Minister must be brought to account and be made answerable for his actions. People deserve the truth over the war in Iraq and the Prime Minister deserves to be impeached."

Note to Editors

The full text of the Written Declaration tabled on 23 November 2004 reads:

Written Declaration

In the names of Alyn Smith, Ian Hudghton, Jill Evans

The European Parliament, having regard to Rule 116 of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas the military forces of the United States and United Kingdom, and others, invaded Iraq in contravention of international law and without United Nations sanction,

B. whereas the public justification for this action in the United Kingdom were two claims that the Iraqi regime had weapons of mass destruction capable of use within 45 minutes, claims subsequently withdrawn by the UK government,

C. whereas Members of the United Kingdom Parliament have set in motion an impeachment procedure to hold the British Prime Minister to account,

1. RECOGNISES that the case for war was flawed from the outset and has destabilised an already volatile region, creating a source of global instability for years to come;

2. DECLARES the support of the European Parliament for the impeachment process; and

3. INSTRUCTS its President to forward this declaration, together with the names of the signatories, to the Commission, the Council, and the governments of the Member States as well as the Secretary General of the United Nations, and in so doing reinforce the importance this institution places in the sanctity of International Law.

ENDS

Contact - Alyn Smith MEP