compiled by Cem Ertür
6 November 2008
1) Prospects in the Middle East
2) UK recognises China’s direct rule over Tibet
excerpt from ‘Prospects in the Middle East‘
Speech by UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband
Annual Lunch of Labour Friends of Israel, Whitehall, London, 4 November 2008
[W]hat we have not had before is an Iranian nuclear programme that poses a threat not just to Israel but to the stability of the entire Middle East. And that makes the case for a comprehensive approach that much more urgent. We must ensure that the unfinished business of Israel’s relationship with the Arab world is not a barrier to dealing properly with the Iranian nuclear issue.
We have made Iran serious offers of engagement, reintegration, and support with civilian nuclear capacity, if they halt their enrichment-related activities as required by five UN Security Council Resolutions. Tehran should be in no doubt that unless they stop enriching uranium we will continue to step-up the pressure. In this, we need to work closely with Israel, and we will, not least through the Strategic Dialogue established between our two countries. But we also need to work with Iran’s Arab neighbours. The rhetoric of President Ahmedinejad is directed against Israel. The support for Hamas and Hizbollah is directed against Israel. But there is a growing awareness that Iran’s nuclear programme poses a threat to regional stability and therefore to all countries in the region.
I don’t underestimate the scale of the challenge or the size of the task. As Prime Minister Olmert said recently this opportunity “is limited in time – a time so short as to cause terrible distress”. But the scale of the challenge is what makes our engagement – all of our engagement, in Government, in Parliament, in business, in civil society, in strong and proud organisations like LFI [Labour Friends of Israel] – all the more necessary.
excerpts from ‘UK recognises China’s direct rule over Tibet’
by Richard Spencer, Daily Telegraph, 5 November 2008
A historic change of position to recognise Chinese sovereignty [over Tibet] was announced in a little-noticed parliamentary statement by the Foreign Secretary David Miliband.
Critics are already asking what Beijing offered – or was asked for – in return.
* editorial note: Foreign Secretary David Miliband’s statement to Parliament