We believe that a clear view of the role that the UN, EU, NATO and other international bodies play in reducing the likelihood of war should be clearly and unambiguously communicated to the electorate.
The UK should also use its membership of such bodies to influence them to reinforce this role and use this peaceful approach whenever possible to avoid conflict.
We will maintain the UK’s commitment to the UN Millennium Project agreement of allocating 0.7% of Gross National Income (GNI) to Overseas Development Assistance. These funds will be kept separate from military spending; any required security, demobilisation, or peacekeeping expenses will be separately funded, from Defence budgets.
We believe that the UK should continue to be a strong voice in the EU. We believe that the EU project is worth pursuing, as it has brought major advantages in terms of political and military stability, scientific progress, economic power, and global influence.
However, we also know that the EU is in need of major reform to fit the politics of the future. Bureaucracy and waste must be reduced, and counter-productive programmes overhauled or removed.
We will remain a part of the EU, and we will campaign for:
Commit to ensuring that no British-built arms are sold to nations that are likely to use those arms against their own people, or to any other agent or third party that may do so.
Commit to working towards a nuclear-weapon-free world by not renewing the Trident Nuclear Deterrent, and encouraging other nations to follow.
We strongly oppose Capital Punishment in all forms, and would work with other nations to try and achieve a worldwide commitment to end death sentences by 2020.
Whilst it’s right that those nations that make the greatest contribution to UN troop deployments should retain a permanent seat on the UN Security Council, no nation on the UN Security Council should have the right of veto. All UN Security Resolutions should be subject to majority vote.
Resist the adoption of international treaties that could allow unelected institutions to have a chilling effect on government policy that is in the public interest of UK voters. A current example is the Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) process in the TTIP treaty currently under negotiation1, which undermines democratic processes and could prevent the government taking action which benefits the UK if it causes potential losses for foreign investors.
The UK should join many other countries around the world, as well as the UN, and officially recognise Palestine as a sovereign state. This is in line with our existing national preference for a two-state solution to the Israel/Palestine conflict in accordance with international law.
We should use our significant financial position within the global economy to help us achieve our ethical foreign policy goals. We should impose financial and trade restrictions against states who pursue aggressive or expansionist policies against their neighbours, or anti-democratic or oppressive policies against their own citizens.
We fundamentally believe in self-determination for residents of the British Overseas Territories, and also that as many powers as possible should be devolved to them. We believe that self-determination, as set out in various international treaties such as UN Resolutions 1415 (XV) and 2625 (XXV) and also the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights as well as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, is sacred where Non Self Governing Territories (NSGTs) such as the British Overseas Territories are concerned. When it comes to decolonisation, including of British Overseas Territories, self-determination is the only acceptable manner in which to do it. As such, we will defend the wishes of the residents against any aggressor states.
We will conduct a review into the state of democracy and people’s rights on Ascension Island. This review will include the right to abode, cementing the powers of the Ascension Island Council and the right to own property.2
The UK should repatriate fully the natives of the Chagos Archipelago that were evicted illegally by the British government between 1967 and 1973. All descendants of those originally evicted should be given the option to return. A referendum should then be held from those that choose to return to decide what to do with Naval Support Facility Diego Garcia which is currently based on the islands.
The UK should revoke the Chagos Marine Protected Area (MPA) as it was founded under the auspices of a legitimate environmental project, when it was later revealed to be a plot to keep the Chagossians off the islands. The Chagos MPA was declared illegal by the Permanent Court of Arbitration on 18 March 2015, as it was in breach of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, and therefore the UK ought to act swiftly in dismantling it.
We support the right of Falkland Islanders to determine their own future, and so respect the outcome of the 2013 sovereignty referendum, when 99.8% of Falklanders voted to remain an Overseas Territory of the UK.
We will commission a report into how best to help Montserrat recover in the long-term following recent eruptions from Soufrière Hills volcano. We will also look at how better infrastructure can be put in place to cope with future crises and disasters.
We will grant British citizenship to the 67 residents of Richmond Village, Akrotiri, Cyprus.3
We recognise that the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) has attempted to turn to peaceful means to secure rights for the Kurdish people4. We also note the PKK’s leadership in resisting the brutality of the ISIS forces in the Middle East. We therefore wish to delist the PKK as a terrorist organisation should it commit itself to disarming in Turkey and re-engaging in the peace process.
“Investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)”, Commons Briefing paper SN06777, December 11, 2013: http://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/SN06777 ↩
“US and UK accused of ‘squeezing life out of’ Ascension Island”, The Guardian, September 11, 2013: http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/sep/11/ascension-island-population-cut-uk-government ↩
“We’re in limbo: the families marooned at a British military base for 16 years”, The Guardian, October 21, 2014: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/21/refugee-families-marooned-raf-base-cyprus ↩
“The Case for Delisting the PKK as a Foreign Terrorist Organization”, Lawfare, February 11, 2016: https://www.lawfareblog.com/case-delisting-pkk-foreign-terrorist-organization ↩