Desperate Jack Straw ships Iraq’s Deputy PM to Blackburn to shore up crumbling support

In a desperate and highly controversial bid to avoid defeat in Blackburn, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has enlisted the support of Iraq’s answer to John Prescott, Deputy Prime Minister Barham Salih.

Salih visited Blackburn last week to address a gathering of Labour activists at the Audley Community Centre. At a hustings meeting shortly afterwards, Jack Straw was asked why, with Iraq in turmoil, the country’s Deputy Prime Minister had been dragged over to Britain to intervene in our election.

The enlistment of Iraq’s Deputy PM for New Labour’s party-political purposes must also raise serious questions about the supposed independence of occupied Iraq.