Speech on Tier 2 and Tier 5 immigration

It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Gapes. It was also a pleasure to hear the hon. Member for Glasgow East (David Linden) introduce the debate. I wish to discuss some points that this debate generates.

Council of Europe: allowing the Russians back in

The Council of Europe debated a report called "Strengthening the decision-making process of the Parliamentary Assembly concerning credentials and voting".  Essentially this was about allowing the Russians back in with no cionditions on their membership.  It was the Russians who had chosen to excl

Council of Europe: budget and expenditure of the Council of Europe

In this speech I challenged the Council of Europe to look at what it does and how it does it.  This was in the continued absence of the money owed by the Russians.  There was a tendency for it to do too much and not concetrate on its core values.  Requests for more money from existing members was

Council of Europe: Question to President of Portugal

I asked the President of Portugal what the positon was regarding amtisemtism in Portugal and more widely in Europe. This followed my visit with the Council to Lisbon when I had observed the jewish community paying for heavy guards to proetct their synagogues.

Council of Europe: Ending violence against children

I gave a speech in this debate to empathise with the calls to protect children. I pointed to the importance of the Lanzarote Convention the first international legal instrument aiming to prevent, criminalise and combat all forms of sexual abuse and exploitation of children.

Council of Europe: Syria

In speaking in a debate on Syria I praised the actvities of Jordan in accepting so many Syrian refugees.  Jordan is the 10th driest country in the world and is running up against its own resources in taking in so many refugees.

Council of Europe: : pushback

Pushback is the growing practice of making life difficult for refugees to stop them entering or staying in a country.  It is inhuman and degrading.  The demands made on countries to tackle this problem are going to require resources and money.  The report is silent on where that money is coming f

Council of Europe: French foreign minister

I asked the French foreign minister a question relating to her speech in which she said that we should be true to our common values. I asked how the current acivitity of the Russians showed any identification with our common values.