I am deeply concerned about this dangerous incident and, equally serious, the subsequent cover-up. Brendan O’Hara MP, SNP Spokesperson for Defence at Westminster, raised these issues directly with the Secretary of State for Defence Michael Fallon in the House of Commons on 23 January 2017, calling for enquiries into both the incident itself and into the Prime Minister’s failure to disclose it.
The longstanding position of the SNP on Trident is unequivocal. We are totally opposed to the spending of billions of pounds on new nuclear weapons and to the presence of these weapons in Scotland. We believe that the financial cost of the programme – a minimum of £179 billion with a strong likelihood of rising costs – is unacceptable and unjustifiable. This is especially true in a time of economic austerity and at a time when the UK Government is substantially cutting defence jobs in Scotland and reducing the overall conventional capabilities of the UK armed forces to an alarming extent.
Just as you advocate, we are pushing for an enquiry into this incident and into the subsequent cover-up which preceded the House of Commons vote on renewal of the Trident programme on 19 July 2016. We will also be pushing for a new vote on renewal in view of this information coming to light. This is a matter of the highest importance to the people of Scotland and the SNP will spare no effort in pursuit of our objective of seeing these weapons removed from Scotland.