10 Jun 2013


MPs will demand to know how former Prime Minister Tony Blair was able
to push through a "flimsy case" for British involvement in the Iraq War
in 2003 during a landmark debate in the House of Commons this week [1].

A cross party bid led by Green MP Caroline Lucas has successfully
secured a six-hour debate to take place in Parliament on THURSDAY (13
JUNE) - giving today's MPs the chance to interrogate the process which
took the UK into war.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Parliamentary vote to go
into Iraq and 10 years since the US-led invasion, which led to the
toppling of Saddam Hussein, began.

The Chilcot Inquiry, established in the aftermath of the conflict in
2009 by Gordon Brown, is yet to report and there are signs it could be
further delayed until after the next election.

CAROLINE LUCAS MP, who led the application for a debate to the
Backbench Business Committee with support from MPs including Rory
Stewart (Conservative), Paul Flynn (Labour) and

Charles Kennedy (Liberal Democrat), said:

"Despite the huge controversy over the way the UK was taken to war in
Iraq in 2003, there has never been a full and totally independent
inquiry into the decision.

"British troops may have ended Iraqi combat operations in 2009, but
serious questions remain about many aspects of the conflict, including
allegations of systemic abuse of Iraqi detainees.

"With ongoing delays to the reporting of the Chilcot Inquiry, it is
critical that the public does not see Parliament just sitting back and
ignoring the 10-year anniversary of this devastating


"The legacy of the Iraq invasion is still with us today, and on crucial
factors such as exit strategies and so-called 'mission creep', the
experiences in Iraq clearly hold great relevance for our handling of
current conflicts.

"We owe it to the servicemen and women and all those who have lost
their lives in Iraq - not to mention the millions of people who marched
against the war - to carefully examine what happened, in order to learn
the lessons of arguably the most damaging foreign policy decision of
recent times."



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