CategoryInternational Development

Statement on Airstrikes in Syria


Decisions about the circumstances in which UK forces should be sent into action are amongst the gravest that any government can take. In a modern democracy, government also has a responsibility to listen and the elected parliament should not be cut out of the process that precedes those decisions being made. That, however, is what has happened this weekend. The Prime Minister could and should...

The Syrian Civil War and the refugee crisis: How can the UK help?


Throughout the summer, many people have written to me about the situation in Syria and the ongoing conflict and humanitarian crisis. Many have been about speculation that the UK Government is considering participating in military action in Syria. More recently, even more have focused on the huge refugee crisis which has been unfolding. Here I give some of my thoughts on both issues. The scenes in...

Stepping back in time with WaterAid to support Sanitation and ‘Clean water’ for the World


I stepped back in time this week, taking to WaterAid’s Victorian Street to mark 150 years of Britain’s modern sewers. I was exposed to the sights and smells of an era in which sewage and waste littered our streets, roads and rivers. Over a third (39%) of the world’s population today still live without sanitation, this is why supporting international developed and UK Aid is so crucial, and why...

Lessons from the International Development Committee


Last month, the Amnesty International Group in Bournville, South Birmingham, asked me to address them on my work as a member of the International Development Committee of the House of Commons. This article taken from what I said to the meeting. After 8 years on the International Development Select Committee (IDC), my appointment as Shadow Transport Minister means I have had to recently step down...

MPs conclude that arms exports are undermining UK’s human rights policy


Today the House of Commons Committee on Arms Exports, that I am a member of, publishes a report concluding that the UK’s human rights policy is being fundamentally undermined by the scale and nature of arms exports licences being approved by the Government. It also finds that the situation in Israel and the Occupied Palestine Territories is of severe concern.

Action needs to follow rhetoric at G8


There is enough food in the world to feed everyone. But every year 2.3 million children die from malnutrition. If we’re going to put a stop to this global injustice we need radical change. Hosting the G8 in Northern Ireland today and tomorrow (17-18 June), the UK once again has the opportunity to demonstrate its ability to show global leadership. Alongside hundreds of charities and Ivan Lewis...

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Richard Burden

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I was Labour Member of Parliament for Birmingham Northfield between 1992 and 2019 and a former Shadow Transport Minister. I now chair Healthwatch in Birmingham and Solihull, and the West Midlands Board of Remembering Srebrenica. I also work as a public affairs consultant. I am an effective community advocate and stakeholder alliance builder with a passion for human rights. I am a trustee of the Balfour Project charity and of Citizens Advice Birmingham, and a former Chair of Medical Aid for Palestinians.

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