Readers' letters: UK must stick to international law

As expected, the UK Government intends to introduce legislation violating the Northern Ireland Protocol, an international treaty Johnson signed in December 2020.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 21st June 2022, 7:00 am

It says it will publish legal advice to justify breaking international law. I wonder if the legal advice will reference the Vienna convention on the law of treaties. Article 27 says, “A party may not invoke the provisions of its internal law as justification for its failure to perform a treaty.”

This isn’t the first time the UK Government has violated international law. In September 2020 Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis admitted that the Internal Market bill broke international law.

And Johnson has broken UK law on several occasions including the illegal proroguing of Parliament and holding a string of Downing Street parties while the rest of the country was locked down.

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This Government has turned the UK into an international pariah and an economic basket case through its own actions. Leaving the EU has, as widely predicted, wreaked economic havoc, diminished the UK internationally and is hastening the break-up of the Union.

Scotland must seize this opportunity to restore its independence and ground it on a written constitution, a democratic voting system and an adherence to and respect for the rule of law.

Leah Gunn Barrett, Edinburgh.

Scotland paying for Westminster policy

Susan Smart (letters 14 June) seems unaware that the Scottish government spends £700 million every year mitigating Westminster’s welfare policies, helping hard-pressed Scots suffering from the cost of living crisis caused by the UK’s disastrous decisions on Brexit, Covid and energy.

Scotland has the best performing public services in the whole of the UK. In Scotland 101 out of 1000 people are on an NHS waiting list which is less than in England at 112 and much less than in Wales where the figure is 221 under Labour control

In Scotland 71.6 per cent of patients are seen within four hours at A&E department. The corresponding figures are 65.9 per cent in Wales, 58.7 per cent in England and only 53.1 per cent in Northern Ireland.

Recently EIS chief Larry Flanagan said a narrative that education is ­failing, “is completely untrue as Scottish education is way ahead of the English system.”

He added that although politicians keep referencing the PISA results to try to portray ­Scottish attainment in a poor light, there is “little difference between the different jurisdictions”.

Given Scotland’s vast natural resources , £20 million for an independence referendum is a small price to pay to give us the opportunity to match the prosperity of Denmark, Norway, Finland and Ireland which all have a higher standard of living and better state pensions than the UK.

Fraser Grant, Edinburgh.

Women’s right to choose occupation

Susan Dalgety is on the wrong track (‘Sex work is not a healthy career choice’, News, June 13).

I've never been to a strip club but surely the women working there are safer being in a regulated place of work rather than touting for work on the streets.

Susan says that young women are viciously beaten by their pimps for failing to earn enough money but this would not, I imagine, happen in a club where there are other staff around.

Anyway, what has happened to women's rights - if they wish to work in a strip club, then that should be their decision.

Sylvia Wilson, Edinburgh.

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