What can we expect the Lib Dems to say in today’s Parliamentary debate on Afghanistan?

Parliament returns to day to spend five short hours debating the crisis in Afghanistan.

What can we expect Liberal Democrats to be saying?

The first priority is about getting people to safety. Yesterday, Layla Moran tweeted that we should be taking at least 20,000 refugees, a figure based on what we had called on for Syrians and what the Canadians had proposed.

Crucially, she added that this had to be backed up by proper funding to local councils to resettle refugees and provide them with the support that they need.

It’s interesting that Lib Dem run Portsmouth City Council has taken in more refugees than the rest of SE England combined, living our values to help some of the most vulnerable people in the world.

This is how liberals respond do these things. Compare and contrast with the tone of Labour mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham’s remarks which had a definite undertone of refugees being a burden that had to be shared equally between every local authority.

The Government’s feeble response – taking up to 20,000 people over a year – is not going to cut the mustard. Layla explained why:

She added that “the Taliban are knocking on doors now and making lists of those they plan to kill. Every hour brings a new horror story of the devastating impact on women and girls stuck in the country.”

The second thing we will be asking for is new funding for aid projects:

MPs’ inboxes are full of emails from concerned and horrified constituents, some of whom are worried about family, all of whom are worried about the safety of people most vulnerable to the Taliban. We can expect those issues to be reflected in their remarks.

We’ll have all the Lib Dem contributions on here later today. The debate starts at 9:30 am.

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This entry was posted in Europe / International and Parliament.
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4 Comments

  • Helen Dudden 18th Aug '21 - 9:31am

    The Stabilization Unit who work with the FCO, have been useful to countries that are not stable.
    It takes many year’s after conflict, to get back to some sort of normal.
    This is where I look from a different side, one thing I’ve personally learnt through child abduction issues, it’s not wise to not try for peace. I met the head of services in one country and that took much effort.
    We have a very unstable world that I feel needs more effort.

  • John Marriott 18th Aug '21 - 10:08am

    I thought that Sir Edā€™s call on Johnson to convene a European security summit was a good starting point. Better coordinated action than fragmented.

  • I’m not sure if Johnson, Patel and Raab actually had the courtesy to remain to listen to Ed Davey?
    They were there for Blackford but, after using the unusual step of recalling parliament, they seemed to disappear rather quickly.. I don’t know if Biden’s call for a ‘virtual conference’ had anything to do with it but it seems shameful that those most responsible for this debacle, and sorting it out, have left the House..

  • Margaret Lally 20th Aug '21 - 11:24am

    This crisis demonstrates the need to defeat the Nationality & Borders Bill. If that Bill was now law and Afghan refugees had arrived here before the Resettlement Scheme still being discussed their arrival would be deemed illegal and they could be sent to another country. Lib Dems for Seekers Of Sanctuary have published a statement setting out what should be our response to the Afghan refugee emergency. It can be found at ld4sos.org.uk

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