Easington Labour candidate backs scrapping of Trident

A Labour candidate in the region has broken ranks by pledging to vote against the renewal of the Trident nuclear deterrent.

Party leader Ed Miliband has insisted he would retain the submarine-based weapons system, because Britain faces an “uncertain and unstable world”.

And he has rejected demands from the Scottish Nationalists who say it is not the best way “to spend £100bn” – the possible total cost of replacing the deterrent.

But Grahame Morris, in Easington, is among around 50 Labour candidates who have made clear their opposition in statements on the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament website.

Mr Morris wrote:

“Replacing Trident will undermine the UK’s moral authority when seeking to restrict nuclear proliferation by other countries.

“We must adapt to meet the new security challenges of the 21st Century, such as climate change, pandemics, organised crime, cyber warfare and terrorism.

“In a time of austerity, when the Government are making damaging cuts to our armed forces, we cannot justify spending in excess of £100bn on a new Trident system that will do nothing to improve the security or defence of the UK.”

The stance puts Mr Morris strongly at odds with Kevan Jones, the North Durham candidate and defence spokesman, who recently said of Trident :

“It is party policy, it has gone through rigorous policy review, it was endorsed at conference last year, and that is the policy.

“We’re in favour of a minimum credible nuclear deterrent based on a continuous-at-sea deterrent.”

The Conservatives have been criticised by senior military figures for making Trident an election issue, after the Defence Secretary suggested Mr Miliband was ready to “stab the UK in the back”, to get into No.10.

 And Mr Jones added:
“The party who used Trident as a bargaining chip to get power were the Tories in 2010, who delayed the main gate decision on renewal to do deal with the Lib Dems.”
> Anyone who thinks Trident is a good idea should ask themselves this question : Do you know where your nuclear bomb shelter is ?
You can bet government leaders, the royal family and top military brass all know where theirs are, and will be safely in them before they press the button.
Source –  Northern Echo,  17 Apr 2015
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