We should not be bullied into this subservience and blatant hypocrisy just to gain intelligence.
On BBC Question Time this week, our relationship with Saudi Arabia was brought to the fore as a touchy subject with Conservative minister Anne Soubry struggling to articulate a consistent foreign policy position. The government has the unenviable task of trying to balance national security with the promotion of human rights, but by bending over backwards to Saudi Arabia – one of the greatest human rights abusers and exporters of hatred in the world – it is doing neither.
David Cameron claims that we have a relationship with Saudi Arabia because “we receive from them important intelligence and security information that keep us safe”.
But this is a regime which executes children in spite of ratifying international treaties that prohibits such behaviour. There have been over 150 executions this year, most through the brutal method of beheading, and almost half for offences that do not meet the threshold of “most serious crimes” as required by international law. These include drug offences, apostasy and even “sorcery” – and frequently after unfair trials.