Dickson says Trident a relic of the past

Alliance MLA Stewart Dickson has called on MPs to reject renewing Britain’s nuclear weapons programme when the issue comes before the House of Commons later.

East Antrim MLA Mr Dickson said the full, expensive renewal of Trident would be a poor decision in a rapidly changing world.

“Sadly, we live in a world where nuclear weapons exist. Therefore, it would be foolish to call for the unilateral disarmament of the UK. But to renew Trident fully would be a costly vanity project at a time when both the economy has been hit by the EU referendum and when we are seeing the nature of the threats we face globally changing.

“The Cold War is no longer being fought and we should not renew in full a relic of those times, while the country’s forces, as well as Foreign and Commonwealth Office functions, are done on the cheap.

“At a time when people are experiencing austerity measures, we should not spend the money on a deterrent but rather our conventional forces, who are better equipped to face the challenges going forward, including humanitarian and relief work around the world. Today and tomorrow’s threats will not necessarily be from established foreign states, so a renewal of Trident would do nothing to respond to those dangers.”

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