Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Articles & Published Letters - 2007

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St Pancras reopening - The Guardian, November 13th 2007
I welcome many of my constituents to the European parliament each year but I would far rather they came to see me in Brussels than Strasbourg (Travel: 100 Eurostar tips, November 10).

Musharraf does not deserve our support - Daily Telegraph, November 6th 2007
Your leading article on Pakistan ("Musharraf does not deserve our support", November 5) should be required reading at the Foreign Office. It may have been apposite to bolster military dictators in the Cold War, but there is no excuse to back Gen Musharraf now.

Armenian Massacres - Financial Times, November 5th 2007
The Armenian massacres may have been "airbrushed from history" by modern Turkey ("Laying memory's ghosts to rest", editorial October 29) but, more importantly, not by most serious independent historians.

Eritrea's record of tyranny - The Independent, October 24th 2007
Your report on violence in Ethiopia (17 October) is disturbing, but the human-rights situation in neighbouring Eritrea is hardly better. Eritrea routinely locks up opponents and journalists. Reporters Without Borders ranks Eritrea the worst country in the world for press freedom.

Turkey should face up to its past - The Times, October 23rd 2007
If the recent congressional resolution on the Armenian genocide was, as you suggest, appallingly timed, when is a suitable time to talk about genocide? The Armenian lobby is so vociferous precisely because of the apparent conspiracy of silence that has surrounded the genocide for almost a century.

The language of reform in the European Union - The Guardian, October 19th 2007
I have long been an advocate of reform of the European parliament's hugely expensive and increasingly unsustainable interpretation and translation policy. The fact is that English, much to the chagrin of the French, has become the language of choice now in Brussels.

Patients should not face religious prejudice - The Daily Telegraph, October 10th 2007
British taxpayers bear the cost of training doctors. Patients should therefore expect to benefit from a doctor's medical expertise, regardless of whether a condition is alcohol-related or sexually transmitted.

Unilateral call on Kosovo may strengthen Putin - Taipei Times (Taiwan), September 28th 2007
Even though lack of foresight is universally viewed as a leading cause of its Iraq debacle, the US (with British backing probable) is now preparing to recognize Kosovo's independence unilaterally -- irrespective of the consequences for Europe and the world.

Bangladesh arrest - The Times, July 23rd 2007
Bangladesh, a strategic country of 150 million people, has a proud history of progress under secular democracy since its independence in 1971. We are therefore gravely concerned about the undignified arrest this week of the former Prime Minister and Awami League president Sheikh Hasina.

The onus is on Africa's Leaders - The Guardian, July 5th 2007
Salim Lome's trenchant analysis of Africa's woes (Comment, July 4) contains an important truism, namely that only Africa's leaders and people can solve the continent's problems. Foreign aid has perpetuated a dependency culture.

We need the freedom to make our economy grow - The Guardian, June 27th 2007
Will Hutton's lament against foreign takeovers of British firms (Comment, June 25) fails to offer much evidence that this phenomenon - otherwise known as economic globalisation - is negative for Britain. Even more questionable is his assertion that those of us who opposed the original draft EU constitution should be equally vociferous in denouncing such takeovers.

Why the Lib Dems want no referendum - The Independent, June 19th 2003
I am not surprised that Andrew Duff MEP is dead set against a referendum on the EU Constitution (letter, 18 June). He co-authored a report here in the European Parliament calling for the Constitution's adoption regardless of its rejection by the French and Dutch.

Dark side of Russia - The Daily Telegraph, May 24th 2007
The murder of my constituent Alexander Litvinenko last November revealed the dark forces at work in Vladimir Putin's Russia, which is now a trillion-dollar economy on the back of the huge rise in oil prices (report, May 23).

Abbas must restore order in Gaza - The Independent, April 25th 2007
Your report on the worsening security situation in the Gaza Strip ("Minister offers to quit in Gaza row", 24 April) might also have mentioned the abduction of the BBC correspondent Alan Johnston. This week in Strasbourg, MEPs will add their voices to the appeals for his immediate release.

The West is right to be wary - The Guardian, April 14th 2007
The Kremlin's assertion that the US is altering the strategic balance in eastern Europe is somewhat disingenuous. Russia's interference is fuelling Ukraine's political crisis.Russian technical expertise has aided Iran's inevitable acquisition of a nuclear bomb. Russian energy supplies are used as a diplomatic weapon.

An Iranian dreamworld - The Guardian, April 4th 2007
Weeks into the crisis triggered by Iran's illegal capture of 15 British naval personnel, the European Union's irresolute and contradictory approach is making matters worse. Faced with a country whose leader is bent on acquiring nuclear weapons, the EU's leaders are simply dithering, fearing that the fire next door in Iraq could somehow spread.

EU's irresolute approach will inflame crisis on Iran - Financial Times, March 28th 2007
he recent arbitrary detention of UK servicemen followed by dissembling and prevarication by the Iranian regime demonstrates that President Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad cannot be trusted on his word that Iran has no intention of developing a nuclear weapon. Instead he appears determined to have some bargaining chips to secure the release of Iranian forces aiding the insurgency, captured by the US.

Dope is not main enemy - Evening Standard, March 26th 2007
Charlotte Ross's plea to tighten the law on cannabis, coloured by personal family tragedy, does not make for rational policymaking (23 March). Speaking personally and not for my party as a retired consultant psychiatrist formerly in charge of a secure ward, I entirely agree with Professor David Nutt's view that cannabis is less dangerous than alcohol or tobacco to the nation's health.

On the wrong track - The Guardian, February 12th 2007
While I am normally the first to criticise wasteful EU spending, paying commercial fees for bank transfers to keep public money away from the Hamas-led Palestinian government seems the least worst option (EU's attempt to avoid Hamas costs 2m in bank charges, February 7).