Following the murder of George Floyd at hands of a police officer in the United States of America, Mary has joined with a number of MPs to add her name to letter by Dawn Butler MP which calls on the Government to immediately suspend export licences of all riot related equipment to the US. The letter reads:
Dear Secretary of State,
RE: The immediate suspension of rubber bullet, tear gas and other exports to the US
We write to you, as a cross-party group of MPs, following the murder of George Floyd at the hands of the Minnesota Police force, which has now led to human rights abuses across the United States.
To witness not only the murder but what can easily be described as a lynching of a black man at the hands of a police officer is an incident that has shocked the world. The brutality now aimed towards protesters and reporters across the country is unacceptable.
We as parliamentarians we need to act fast, the UK Government has granted export licences for the sale of anti-crowd gas, riot equipment, rubber bullets and other small arms to the US. The UK Government is bound by law to freeze export of all policing and security equipment to the US where it could be misused. There is clear evidence to show that the aforementioned items are being misused. The UK will urgently need to investigate to ascertain whether any of those used were supplied by the UK.
Therefore, we call on the UK Government to immediately suspend all export licenses to the US of all riot related items. Let us heed the words of Martin Luther King Jr. – an injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
Thank you for your consideration of these matters and we look forward to your response shortly.