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Monday, April 24, 2017

Labour lacking clarity on key policy

All parties have a moment during election campaigns when a key spokesperson goes off message, leaving spin doctors to gloss over the mistake and set things straight. It is not usual though for the party leader to undermine policy in the way that Jeremy Corbyn did yesterday.

As the Guardian reports, Labour was forced to issue a statement on Sunday saying: “The decision to renew Trident has been taken and Labour supports that. We also want Britain to do much more to pursue a proactive, multilateral disarmament strategy.”

This statement came three hours after Corbyn had appeared to cast doubt on a future Labour government’s support for the nuclear deterrent system, and suggested he would think twice about backing a strike to kill the leader of Islamic State:

In an interview on the BBC1’s the Andrew Marr Show, Corbyn, who has been a longstanding campaigner against nuclear proliferation, said he did not believe it necessarily made the UK safer.

“I want us to achieve a nuclear-free world, to adhere to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty and take part in negotiations surrounding that,” he said, stressing an immediate need to take part in talks de-escalate nuclear tensions involving North Korea.

“The issue has to be that we want a secure and peaceful world,”Corbyn said. “You achieve that by promoting peace and also promoting security. Security comes from that process.”

It was the second time since Theresa May announced the snap general election last week that Labour has had to clarify statements made by the leader.

At this rate Labour's manifesto-writing process could prove to be an interesting tug of war. If Corbyn continues to undermine it then it may be not worth the paper it is written on.
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