Emily Thornberry Questions Government Export Deals of Riot Control Equipment

Emily Thornberry, the Shadow International Trade Secretary, has asked the Government to stop the export of riot control equipment to the United States. Writing to Liz Truss, the Secretary of State for International Trade, Thornberry noted that the Government had issued licenses for anti-riot guns, tear gas, and riot shields. The SNP and the Liberal Democrats said that they agreed with Thornberry’s comments, with the Government yet to comment.

Thornberry’s letter noted:

“At a time when Donald Trump is gearing up to use the US military to crush the legitimate protests taking place across America over the murder of Black civilians, it would be a disgrace for the UK to supply him with the arms and equipment he will use to do so.

If this were any other leader, in any other country in the world, the suspension of any such exports is the least we could expect from the British government in response to their actions, and our historic alliance with the United States is no reason to shirk that responsibility now.

Indeed, because our alliance is above all based on the values we share with the American people, that is all the more reason why we must not supply arms and equipment that Donald Trump is willing to use to attack his own people, in total contravention of those values. The British public deserve to know how arms exported by this country are being used across the world, and the American public deserve the right to protest peacefully without the threat of violent repression.”

The full text of the letter is here.