For immediate release: Wednesday 20 July 2016
 
Attn: News desks / political correspondents

CROSS PARTY GROUP TO TAKE BLAIR CONTEMPT MOTION TO SEPTEMBER COMMONS SITTING

The Group seeking to bring the contempt motion against the former Prime Minister, Tony Blair, have vowed to present their motion after the Parliamentary recess.
 
The Speaker has declined the request to hold the motion under a privilege procedure in the House today (Wednesday). However, in response the SNP have agreed to allocate one of their opposition days in September, which will allow the motion to be debated on the floor of the House after the recess. 
 
Alex Salmond MP commented:

"It is disappointing that the Speaker did not accept that the contempt motion should take precedence in the parliamentary timetable. It will be a great disappointment to the millions of people who have been waiting so long for the former Prime Minister to be finally held to Parliamentary account for the disaster of the Iraq war.”

The Group of seven MPs had presented the Speaker with a "dossier of truth", which itemises the evidence detailed in the Chilcot Report on how the former Prime Minister systematically misled the House of Commons over a period of 15 months from late 2001 to the onset of the Iraq war in 2003.
 
ENDS
 
Notes:
 
The contempt motion is backed by MPs from seven political parties, including:
 
Sir Roger Gale MP, Kate Hoey MP, Alex Salmond MP, Greg Mulholland MP, Hywel Williams MP, Margaret Ritchie MP and Caroline Lucas MP.
 
The motion reads as follows:

“That the report of the Iraq Inquiry, its findings and in particular the publication of the associated correspondence from the former Prime Minister, Mr Tony Blair, to the President of United States, and others, demonstrates that statements made to the House of Commons by Mr Tony Blair in 2001, 2002 and 2003 on the subject of military action in Iraq were seriously misleading and that accordingly we find Mr Blair in contempt of this House.”

Press enquiries: Tom Collins / tom.collins@parliament.uk