Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 1st 2015 Contents A29
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Jeremy Corbyn, Britain's Labour Party
leader, has faced criticism from senior
Labour colleagues for saying he would not
fire Britain's nuclear weapons if he were
Shadow defence secretary Maria Eagle
said the words were "not helpful," while
shadow foreign secretary Hilary Benn said
Corbyn should abide by the party's decision
on renewing Trident.
Corbyn said nuclear weapons "didn't do
the USA much good on 9/11."
He added that he was elected leader on a
platform opposing Trident renewal.
Prime Minister David Cameron said
Corbyn's comments showed Labour could
not be trusted with Britain's national
Following the shadow cabinet criticism of
his comments, Corbyn was asked what the
point of the Labour defence policy debate
and review was.
He said: "The point of a policy debate is to
try and bring people with me."
Jeremy Corbyn: I will not fire nuclear weapons
an honour guard
after his arrival in
is in Jamaica on
an official visit to
meet with his
Miller and to take
part in official
Kingston and St
David Cameron has ruled out making
reparations for Britain s role in the historic
slave trade and urged Caribbean countries
to "move on."
The prime minister acknowledged that
"these wounds run very deep" during his
visit to Jamaica, where he faced calls to apol-
ogise from campaigners.
He said Britain s role in wiping slavery
"off the face of our planet" should be
Jamaican PM Portia Simpson Miller said
she had raised the issue in talks.
Addressing MPs in Jamaica s parliament,
Cameron said slavery was "abhorrent in all
He added: "I do hope that, as friends who
have gone through so much together since
those darkest of times, we can move on from
this painful legacy and continue to build for
He said his visit---the first by a British
prime minister in 14 years---was to "rein-
vigorate" ties between the countries, and
that he wanted to concentrate on future
relations rather than centuries-old issues.
Mrs Simpson Miller said while she was
"aware of the obvious sensitivities," Jamaica
was "involved in a process under the auspices
of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) to
engage the UK on the matter."
During Cameron s speech, a small group
of protesters with placards that read "repa-
rations now" gathered outside parliament.
For more than 200 years Britain was at
the heart of a lucrative transatlantic trade
in millions of enslaved Africans.
According to ship records it is estimated
about 12.5 million people were transported
as slaves from Africa to the Americas and
the Caribbean---to work in often brutal con-
ditions on plantations---from the 16th century
until the trade was banned in 1807.
In 1833, Britain emancipated its enslaved
people and raised the equivalent of £17bn
in compensation money to be paid to 46,000
of Britain s slave-owners for "loss of human
property." University College London has
compiled a database of those compensat-
ed.Among those listed is General Sir James
Duff, who it is claimed is a first cousin six
times removed of David Cameron. He was
awarded compensation worth around £3
million in today s terms.
Others who received compensation include
the ancestors of novelists George Orwell and
Graham Greene, as well as distant relatives
of Arts Council chairman Sir Peter Bazalgette
and celebrity chef Ainsley Harriott.
The issue of former slave-owning nations
compensating former colonies is a con-
tentious one in the Caribbean, where national
commissions have calculated the sums could
run into trillions of dollars.
One suggestion has been that the money
could be provided in the form of debt relief.
BBC News correspondent Elaine Dunkley,
who specialises in African Caribbean social
affairs, said: "There really has been an issue
with reparation in Jamaica, we can t say that
the reception there [to Mr Cameron s visit]
has been universally warm.
"Correcting the wrongs of the past is not
only costly but complicated and David
Cameron has said that he doesn t feel repa-
ration is the way forward in this case."
Sir Hilary Beckles, chairman of Caricom s
reparations commission, wrote in an open
letter in the Jamaica Observer that the UK
must "play its part in cleaning up this mon-
umental mess of Empire."
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who lived
in Jamaica for two years in his youth, said
that, as prime minister, he would be ready
to apologise for the slave trade.
Speaking at Labour s annual conference
in Brighton, Mr Corbyn said it was "the
most brutal part of our history and the history
of Jamaica." (BBC)
Russia has begun carrying out air
strikes in Syria against opponents of
President Bashar al-Assad.
The strikes reportedly hit rebel-
controlled areas of Homs and Hama
provinces, causing casualties.
The US says it was informed an
hour before they took place.
Russian defence officials say aircraft
targeted the Islamic State group, but
an unnamed US official told Reuters
that so far they did not appear to be
targeting IS-held territory.
Syria s civil war has raged for four
years, with an array of armed groups
fighting to overthrow the government.
The US and its allies have insisted
that President Assad should leave
office, while Russia has backed its ally
remaining in power.
The upper house of the Russian
parliament earlier granted President
Vladimir Putin permission to deploy
the Russian air force in Syria.
The Russian defence ministry said
the country s air force had targeted IS
military equipment, communication
facilities, arms depots, ammunition
and fuel supplies.
Syrian opposition activists said
Russian warplanes had hit towns
including Zafaraneh, Rastan and Tal-
biseh, resulting in the deaths of 36
people, a number of them children.
None of the areas targeted were
controlled by IS, activists said.
US Secretary of State John Kerry
said the United States was prepared
to welcome Russian military action in
Syria---but only as long as it was
directed against IS and al-Qaeda-
Speaking at the United Nations
Security Council, Kerry said the US
would have "grave concerns" if Russia
conducted strikes against other groups.
Russia s decision to intervene with
its air power greatly complicates the
Syrian crisis while probably offering
little additional chance of a diplomatic
There are serious questions about
who exactly the Russian aircraft are
targeting. US officials believe that the
initial Russian strikes are not in IS-
held territory, raising the possibility
that Russian air power is being utilised
more in the form of close air support
for Syrian government forces against
the multiple enemies of the Assad
Syria air strikes
...David Cameron rules out slavery reparation
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