Diary - pleas in the Chamber not to desert the Kurds in northern Syria

A busy day in Parliament and our last to Monday, as the House prorogued at end of play today. It began with an early morning run in the park, before heading into the Commons. Protesters were still lying around in their tents, which were sprawled across roads, making access for cars and lorries impossible. I am not sure this would be allowed in other countries. Protest, yes, but no one should be allowed to disrupt people's busy working lives and shut down a key part of London for days on end. I think there's a full dress rehearsal of Monday's State Opening of Parliament on Friday, so it will be interesting to see what the police do to accommodate that, and of course the actual event itself. Following Justice Questions, there were two UQs and one Statement. The first UQ was asked by Tobias Ellwood, a former defence minister, and he, like many of us, was concerned at Mr Trump's announcement that he was withdrawing American troops out of northern Syria, leaving the Kurds facing a possible invasion by Turkey, which has made it very clear that that is what it intends to do. These Kurds are the same brave people who have been fighting ISIL and are largely responsible for their destruction. To abandon them now to a Turkish invasion - a NATO ally - would be a betrayal. Turkey has become far more intolerant since President Erdogan stamped his authority on power, with hundreds of journalists under lock and key. His plan is to replace the Kurds with the millions of Syrians who have sought sanctuary in Turkey during Syria's civil war. I did catch the Speaker's eye, and urged the minister that the west must stand firm and support the Kurds, for further destabilisation of the area only creates a vacuum for the possible re-emergence of an Islamic State. I listened to Michael Gove's Statement on preparations for leaving the EU and as always he commanded the Despatch Box with his usual confidence. It is extraordinary how so many MPs continue to do all they can to prevent any sort of departure from the EU, finding fault in everything, rather than promoting and supporting the democratic will of the British people. Yes, leaving the EU without a deal will create a bumpy road in the short term, but our long term prospects are limitless and will see the UK thrive and prosper free from what is nothing more than a protectionist racket. Via my email, I learnt that extra police numbers were to be made public at 0001 tomorrow. Dorset is to get an extra 50 officers in the first year, and a further 120 officers over the following two years. I am pleased, not least because Dorset has been at the bottom of the pile for too long and we deserve and need our fair share of the cake. At 1630, I attended a private meeting of like-minded colleagues, before moving to the weekly ERG session at 1800. That lasted an hour and then it was time to join my wife for supper, the whip having been dropped to a one-line some hours before.