With the news that Parliament is set to be recalled on Friday to discuss the possibility of the Royal Air Force taking part in air strikes in the Middle East, the Island’s MP Andrew Turner has said that he would like to hear the views of Islanders on whether and how the UK should become involved.
Mr Turner has this week said:
“Taking such decisions is never easy, I am acutely conscious that whilst aerial bombings may not lead directly to British deaths, there will be civilian casualties and there may be other unforeseen consequences. I believe that going to war in Iraq in 2001 has contributed to the problems we face now, including the radicalisation of a very small minority of British born Muslims.
“I voted against going to war in 2001, but my instinct is that we are now in a different situation. There are terrible atrocities being carried out by ISIL against many thousands of Iraqi and Syrian people and the ever-present threat of terrorist activities on British soil. And raising the temperature of the situation there have been public beheadings of westerners too, with more threatened.
“If Parliament is recalled I will listen carefully to colleagues of all parties during the debate and weigh up all the information we are given. However, I am also keen to hear the views of Islanders beforehand.
“Members of Parliament are representatives, not delegates. My role is to use my judgement not just to yield to public opinion – which in any case will be split. My vote will not go with whoever shouts loudest, or the side who contacts me in the greatest numbers, but I want to take the views of those I represent into consideration before making such an important decision.”
Islanders can write to Mr Turner at his office at the Riverside Centre, Newport, PO30 2QR, or by e-mail to [email protected]