Rory SullivanWed, 24 February 2021, 8:35 am
Lord Chris Smith, who served as culture secretary in Tony Blair’s government, said that this was a “matter of great regret” and urged Boris Johnson to diversify his top team in “the next year or two”.
Elsewhere, the House of Lords inflicted a third defeat on the government over the so-called genocide amendment, which aims to stop trade deals with countries guilty of such atrocities.
The crossbench peer Lord Alton put forward a fresh amendment on Tuesday, allowing a parliamentary panel of judicial experts to determine whether genocide had been committed by any of the UK’s trading partners. Previously, it had been suggested that the High Court should be given the power to do this.
The new amendment was backed by 367 votes to 214 in the Lords in the latest legislative tussle between the two chambers.