New Forest East



Dr Julian Lewis: I differ rather from my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Plymouth, Moor View (Johnny Mercer), as he knows, in that I actually agree much more with the Government’s suggestion that it has to be a combination of a statute of limitations and a truth recovery process. The problem that we have is that the Government seem to have thought their idea through very clearly, and yet, whenever we expect it to come forward so that we can then drill down deeper to see in which way it needs to be adjusted – perhaps a bit further away from my view and the Government’s and a bit further towards my hon. and gallant Friend’s – nothing ever happens. Having often spoken to him about the matter, I believe that the Secretary of State is well seized of the issues. We cannot understand the reasons for the delay. He needs to bring it to the House and let us get to work on it, because we all want the solution.

[The Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office (Conor Burns): My right hon. Friend speaks powerfully about how frustrated colleagues are that we have not yet brought that legislation to the Floor of the House. I say to my hon. and right hon. Friends and to all hon. Members that we are absolutely committed to making sure that, when we do bring these proposals to this Chamber, they will be robust and watertight. It would be negligent of the Government to proceed at pace until we are satisfied that the proposals we are bringing forward – ]

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Dr Lewis: Who is blocking the Bill [on the Legacy of Northern Ireland's Past]? The Bill is ready; who is blocking it?

[Conor Burns: No one is blocking the Bill. There is ongoing engagement across Government to ensure that the Bill, when it is brought forward – ]