Wigan MP Lisa Nandy sets out Labour's foreign policy in her first speech at the party's conference

Shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy has vowed that Labour will remain a “proud, fiercely internationalist party”, even if Britain has left the European Union.
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In her first speech at the party's conference, in which she set out Labour’s foreign policy, the Wigan MP insisted her party will defend Britain’s national security, protect the planet and uphold human rights by “building bridges, not walls”.

She told delegates in Brighton: “Today we are launching a new taskforce on illicit finance with the aim of making the UK the most inhospitable place in the world for dirty money and ill-gotten gains. Today, we recognise the fight against corruption as a key plank of defending our national interest.

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“The next Labour government will introduce a new arms export regime that is truly transparent and committed to upholding international law. We will end arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

Shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy speaks on stage at the Labour Party conference in BrightonShadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy speaks on stage at the Labour Party conference in Brighton
Shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy speaks on stage at the Labour Party conference in Brighton

“We will introduce an Act of Parliament so companies have a duty to eliminate forced labour from their supply chains and face financial penalties if they fail. Under a Labour government, British shelves will never be stocked with the products of modern slavery. We will end cotton imports from Xinjiang.”

Ms Nandy insisted Labour will also bring an end to a decade of division, saying: “We will seek a new foreign policy partnership with Europe to address our shared challenges, from climate change to Russia.

“We will work with EU partners to develop a new action plan for conflict prevention and peacebuilding, to face up to the challenges in places like Somalia, Yemen, and Tigray. And we will lead the charge at the UN Human Rights Council for a global treaty to end violence against women and girls.”

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She also told the conference the Conservative Party’s foreign policy is for the “Lex Greensills and David Camerons”, one where the “appalling” losses falls on steel workers in towns across Britain.

She said: “When Boris Johnson shamefully abolished the department for international development he said we couldn’t afford to keep our promises to the world’s poorest and help people at home. Then look what he did next. He slashed aid. And then he cut universal credit.

“Theirs is a foreign policy for the Lex Greensills and David Camerons – one where the rewards are theirs, but the appalling losses fall on steel workers in towns like Rotherham. We will navigate by different stars.”

She noted that when crisis engulfed Afghanistan, while the Foreign Secretary was on the beach, Labour was “on the pitch”.

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She added: “The Tories will tell you that they stand up for our country. Never let them get away with it.

“Dragging their feet on a global minimum corporation tax that could pay for kids' catch-up education post-pandemic. Cosying up to Trump as he slaps tariffs on Scotch whisky, a crown jewel in British industry. Trading away our wages, allowing practices like fire and rehire to spread through our country.

“This is the Government who backed those booing our young England football players who took a stand in support of global resistance to racism. How dare they claim to stand up for Britain. To Marcus Rashford, to Tyrone Mings – we say you represent the very best of what this country is.”

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