Labour leadership frontrunner Jeremy Corbyn says he will apologise for the Iraq war
JEREMY CORBYN has said that if he is successful in September’s leadership ballot he will apologise on behalf of the Labour party to British and Iraqi people for the 2003 Iraq invasion.
He stated that the UK’s role in the widely condemned invasion was a horrific mistake that cost Labour millions of voters.
The favourite to win said that he would publish an official apology in The Guardian.
Corbyn was quoted in the Independent saying: “It is past time that Labour apologised to the British people for taking them into the Iraq war on the basis of deception and to the Iraqi people for the suffering we have helped cause. Under our Labour, we will make this apology.
Despite the rationale behind the invasion – That Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction – being a fabrication, Tony Blair, who was prime minister at the time, has yet to apologise.
The Iraqi Body Count project estimates that 219,000 people were killed in the conflict. However, this figure varies depending on the organisation monitoring the figures. The Lancet, one of the oldest medical journals, has the figure at over 600,000.
Corbyn said: “It is past time that Labour apologised to the British people for taking them into the Iraq war on the basis of deception and to the Iraqi people for the suffering we have helped cause. Under our Labour, we will make this apology.
“As a party, we found ourselves in the regrettable position of being aligned with one of the worst right-wing governments in US history, even as liberal opinion in the US was questioning the head-long descent into war.”
Corbyn stated that it was not necessary to hear the findings of the Chilcot Inquiry, which has been significant delayed, to understand that an apology should be issued.
The leadership hopeful noted that millions of Labour party members and supporters actively protested against the invasion, adding: “We turned our backs on them and many of them have either withheld their votes from us or felt disillusioned, unenthusiastic and unmotivated.”
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