Peter Lilley, MP for Hitchin and Harpenden, yesterday asked why no one had resigned over recent revelations that the Government?s dossier on weapons of mass destruction in Iraq had plagiarised large parts of an outdated doctoral thesis. He told the Minister of State for Defence that this undermined the electorate?s trust in the government?s case for war against Iraq.
Peter Lilley said after his intervention in the House of Commons:
“It is unbelievable that the government tried to pull the wool over peoples? eyes by publishing a document which lacked so little genuine intelligence information that it had to resort to plagiarising parts of an outdated doctoral thesis. To lift material off the internet and place it in such an important document, which intended to support the government?s case for disarming Iraq, is an insult to the intelligence of my constituents ? many of whom have expressed anxieties over a possible war in the Gulf. It has also embarrassed our allies who have referred to this document as proof of Iraq?s concealment of weapons of mass destruction.
“No one in the government has accepted responsibility for the way in which this dossier has been prepared and published. It is time that whoever was responsible should admit to betraying the trust of the House of Commons and resign.?