4 February 2021
Sir Iain Duncan Smith calls on Government to back Trade Bill genocide amendment

Sir Iain Duncan Smith calls on the Government to back the genocide amendment to the Trade Bill which will allow the courts to make the decision of genocide and enable Britain to take a lead against China’s abuse of Uyghur women in Xinjiang detention camps. 

Sir Iain Duncan Smith (Chingford and Woodford Green) (Con) [V]

I congratulate my hon. Friend the Member for Wealden (Ms Ghani) on her question and the BBC on its programme. A litany of terrible, terrible abuse —rape, mass internment, people going into concentration camps, people being sterilised, people being maltreated, abused and tortured—which sounds like something from 75 years ago, but it is not; it is today. With respect to the Minister, it is no good anymore coming to the Dispatch Box to say that he agrees with all this. Where are the Magnitsky sanctions on individuals? We have all the evidence necessary. Finally, why, oh why are the Government going out of their way to block this amendment that is coming back to the House of Commons, which will give the courts the power to decide that this is genocide? The Minister has just said in his statement that only the courts can say it is genocide, so let us stop this nonsense, please. Allow the amendment to go through and get the courts to make that decision. It will be a leading position from a British Government—that is the way to go.

Nigel Adams (The Minister for Asia)

I thank my right hon. Friend for his continued interest. I know how strongly he feels about the issue. Again, to be absolutely clear, we understand the strength of feeling, in particular around the Trade Bill, and we believe that there must be more enhanced scrutiny by Parliament of genocide and our response to the crime. That is why we will work with him and other right hon. and hon. Members in that regard.

As we have said, competent courts include international ones, such as the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice, and national criminal courts that meet international standards of due process. On sanctions, we have already come up with targeted measures in respect of UK supply chains. Those are direct actions. Nobody should be any doubt. We are being very clear in our public statements about what is going on in Xinjiang. As I have said, we are carefully considering further designations.