Calls grow in UK to revoke Tony Blair’s knighthood over his ‘war crimes’ in Iraq
Hundreds of thousands of people in Britain have joined a call for former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair to be stripped of his knighthood, citing his war crimes during the Iraq war.
An online petition had attracted more than 700,000 signatures as of Wednesday morning, just four days after it was set up in response to Blair being made a Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter in Queen Elizabeth II’s New Year’s honours list.
The petition says Blair is “the least deserving person of any public honour” and calls for him to be held accountable for war crimes.
“Tony Blair caused irreparable damage to both the constitution of the United Kingdom and to the very fabric of the nation’s society. He was personally responsible for causing the death of countless innocent, civilian lives and servicemen in various conflicts,” it adds.
The ex-Labour Party leader, who served as prime minister from 1997 to 2007, has faced constant criticism in recent decades over his involvement in the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.
The US claimed the regime of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction and actively pressed for invading Iraq in late 2001. Those weapons were never found.
Two decades on: One million dead Iraqis, three million dispossessed and a region reeling from terrorism and instability.
Hundreds of British troops were killed in the same conflict. Anti-war campaigners say Blair belongs in the dock at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, and not in the pantheon of great leaders.