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Lords Debate Autocrats, Kleptocrats and Populists Vol. 818

Question for short debate

Debated : 3rd of February, 2022

Moved by: Lord Browne (LAB)

That the Grand Committee takes note of the impact on global democratic norms and values from autocrats.

Question for short debate

Debated : Debated : 3rd of February, 2022

RESOURCES:

Lords Debate Autocrats, Kleptocrats and Populists Vol. 818

Question for short debate

Debated : 3rd of February, 2022

Moved by: Lord Browne (LAB)

Moved by: Lord Browne (LAB)

That the Grand Committee takes note of the impact on global democratic norms and values from autocrats.

[EXCERPT] - So what might we do when institutions are subverted? By way of example, might the United Kingdom lead by suggesting to its partners that we join an informal and temporary coalition of countries to simultaneously recognise on the same day the sovereignty of Taiwan—a vibrant and brave democracy which has been referred to during this debate, where the rule of law is upheld and diversity and difference are respected? Does the Minister agree that there would be relative safety in numbers if 40 or 50 nations found the courage to make a joint announcement recognising the sovereignty of Taiwan, thereby with one diplomatic gesture turning the tables on the CCP’s bullying posturing, or does our fear of losing diplomatic face immobilise us in the face of tyranny? I hope the Minister will commit to exploring a much more robust approach with our partners. As we have heard, this is beyond urgent. During exchanges in the House on Monday, I specifically asked the Minister about the co-ordinated action which is greatly needed to face off the Kremlin’s aggression and metamorphosis from managed democracy to outright dictatorship. If Russia does invade Ukraine, does the Minister agree with what the noble Lord, Lord Hannan, said earlier that it is not beyond the bounds of possibility that Beijing might seize the chance to take one or two of the small islands around Taiwan, or indeed Taiwan itself? There are memories here of the Sudetenland and Czechoslovakia and the enfeebled procrastination that emboldened the dictators of the day. Our piecemeal condemnation after the fact will have no more impact than the proverbial wailing and gnashing of teeth. The time for mass recognition of Taiwan’s sovereignty by the free nations of the world is now.

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