Peers have clashed over Iran and Israel in the House of Lords, ahead of a strategic spending review covering the full spectrum of national security and defence.
Debating the Queen’s Speech, there were suggestions that the government’s proposed nuclear agreement with Iran “fell well short” and that the UK should “recognise the State of Palestine” to kick-start Middle East negotiations.
In a series of exchanges, Lord Palmer of Childs Hill expressed frustration that his Upper House colleagues were happy to agree nuclear terms with Tehran, saying he saw “a lack of realistic strategy” with regards to Iran.
“The parameters of the framework agreement with Iran fall well short of the goals originally set by the P5+1 and President Obama,” he said. “It surely gives Iran the space to push for yet further concessions in future talks.”
He added: “We are near to the lifting of sanctions. They will be difficult to put back in place should Tehran subsequently seek to violate commitments made.”
Elsewhere, his fellow Lib Dem peer Lord Alderdice suggested that the government intervene in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, saying: “There is no possibility of any simple negotiation unless we change the situation, and the only way is if this country and the United States recognises the state of Palestine, and then move to implement it. Anything else is only fiddling in the wind.”