Sunday, December 17, 2006

Blair Bribery Backdown Betrays Blacks

To the Editor
The Guardian

The Prime Minister says that to go ahead with the BAE/Saudi bribery investigation would have caused "immense damage" to British interests - presumably because the Saudis threatened to ease up on their prosecution of supporters of Osama bin Laden, even though they themselves are threatened by his Wahabis. Blair may or may not be right in this assessment, and it may or may not matter in the long term.

What is certain is that by stopping a corruption case for political reasons, he has given a huge boost to the world community of corruption practitioners . This amounts to a betrayal of Africa where endemic corruption is one of the major causes of delayed and inadequate development. So much for Tony's commitment to Africa, not to mention his commitment to the rule of law.

Dr Richard Lawson
Joint International Coordinator
Green Party in England and Wales

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