Diary - Labour's protestations give succour to Iran

An early rise on a cold, sunny morning. Worked through to 1100 and then to London. In the Commons, I climbed the stairs to Committee Room 19 to attend the next meeting of the European Scrutiny Committee. As you can imagine, a lot of EU legislation has found its way to the Commons since the House last sat. Then at 1530 I dropped down to the Chamber to listen to an Urgent Question posed by Labour about the jailed mother Nazanin Zaghazi-Ratcliffe. Not surprisingly, Labour has attempted to politicise comments by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, where he told a Committee that this lady had gone to Iran to teach journalism rather than on holiday. Whatever the rights and wrongs of Mr Johnson's comments, the key issue is that we all speak with the same voice and condemn Iran for wrongfully locking this poor lady up. It is an outrage and Labour's protestations only add fuel to the fire and give succour to the Iranians. After the UQ, David Davis came to the Despatch Box to report on the latest news from his negotiations with the EU. There is growing anger in the House, I feel, against those who are clearly attempting to thwart the will of the British people. Sadly some of those are on our side of the House. This session went on for some time and I eventually caught the Speaker's eye near the end. The EU Withdrawal Bill begins to go through the Committee stage tomorrow. The day in the Chamber ended with a debate on the N Ireland Budget Bill.