Attacks demonstrate the need to reject terrorism

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Michelle Donelan Column GH 31 March 16

The aim of terrorists is to kill, maim and disrupt a way of life of those they disagree with, hate, or perhaps even fear.

The deadly attacks by Daesh in Belgium last week were utterly abhorrent. Similarly, the (far less reported) bombing in a park in Lahore where a Taliban splinter group Jamaat-ul-Ahrar carried out a devastating attack against Christians celebrating Easter, killing more than 70 people, was equally shocking. Clearly on both occasions there were gaps in intelligence which could, perhaps, have led to the plots being detected and averted.

Tony Blair wrote last weekend about the need for stronger global leadership and action against these terrorist threats. People are certainly now less inclined to listen to the former Prime Minister after his track record on Iraq, but on this I believe he is absolutely right. There needs to be tough, enduring action to help ensure the wicked ideology, murderous barbarism and torturous ways of these terrorist networks are rejected by anyone and everyone who is susceptible to their message. That action starts through our own intelligence services, who are among the best in the world, with some of the most advanced capabilities. I believe it is important to ensure that our brilliant security services have every tool available to ensure that we continue to live in a free, tolerant and safe society.

Locally, there has been a small but important step forward in the campaign to re-open Corsham Station. The campaign for a new railway station in Corsham has been gathering pace with the provisional business case made, the support of many stakeholders and a clear opportunity to bring it to reality. As I have said before, there is no quick fix and a station will not be built overnight; the key is to gain as much community, business and political backing as possible. I believe we are on the right track and are slowly making progress. For more information and regular updates visit the new campaign website: http://corshamrailwaystation.org

Traffic in Bradford on Avon continues to be a significant concern and I recently sent a survey to every resident and business there to gather more information about opinions on possible solutions. The response to the survey has been encouraging and I am currently compiling a report into the results which should be available on my website from next week. If you would like to receive a copy of the report by email, please contact my office.

I have a number of constituency surgeries in the coming weeks. If you have any local or national issues that you would like to discuss, please email me on michelle.donelan.mp@parliament.uk or call (01249) 704465