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A typical convoy © Nukewatch

Approval Given to MP’s Nuclear Convoy Bill

A bill introduced by Midlothian’s SNP MP Owen Thompson will be given a second reading following parliamentary support.

On Wednesday, the county’s MP introduced a ten minute rule bill calling for a moratorium on the transportation of nuclear weapons between Berkshire and Argyll. These so called “nuclear convoys” travel from their storage point in Coulport, Argyll, to their manufacturing and servicing plant in Berkshire, and vice versa.

The MP said that according to campaign group Nukewatch, nuclear convoys have travelled through Midlothian on several occasions “parking close to schools and sparking public outrage”.

Owen Thompson commented:

The idea that weapons of mass destruction are being transported through the streets of Midlothian, and all across the UK is absolutely chilling – I’m calling on MPs of all parties to join me in condemning the unacceptable risk to public safety.

The impact of any safety breach simply does not bear thinking about.  The Ministry of Defence must now detail exactly what safety precautions they take while these nuclear weapons travel through the UK – and put an immediate stop to the convoys.

Following support in the commons, Owen Thompson’s bill will now proceed to a second reading, where the  house will be given the opportunity to scrutinise the proposals further. The bill will return on Friday 4 March.

Following his Commons success, Mr Thompson MP added:

If passed, my bill will put a stop to these nuclear weapons convoys that drive past homes, shops and schools on their way to and from Coulport in Argyll and I am delighted to have received parliamentary support for this proposal.

The SNP is clear in our opposition to these useless weapons of mass destruction and the only way to fully guarantee public safety is to rid Scotland of these devices completely. The SNP will continue to fight every step of the way against spending £167bn on weapons of mass destruction.

This bill comes as the UK Government debates whether to renew the country’s ‘Trident’ nuclear submarines. The ruling Conservative government wants to renew the system at a cost of £31bn, a move the Scottish National Party opposes, instead favouring the removal of the weapons from the west coast of Scotland. Unions have warned that this could lead to the loss of thousands of jobs.