Question on the right to return of the Chagos Islanders

Jeremy Corbyn: I apologise for not being here for the earlier part of the debate. I am doing what I have condemned many others for doing by turning up late and taking part. Please forgive me.

I declare an interest as the president of the Chagos islands all-party group and as someone who has been a passionate advocate for the Chagos islanders for a very long time. I am delighted that the Minister will be travelling there and meeting the islanders. I hope that he will—I am sure he will—understand the humanitarian hurt that the Chagos islanders have suffered, the justice of their right to return and the real possibility that that could be brought about.

I hope the Minister will agree, as soon as he returns from that visit, to meet the all-party group and have a serious discussion with it and the islanders, so that we can finally put to bed this horrible period in British history when a group of islanders, wholly innocent of anything, were so abominably treated and so brutally removed from their homes. They have suffered for so long and fought so valiantly for their human right to live where they were born and grew up.