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Henry Smith

Henry Smith MP: Time to reflect on those who cannot celebrate the festive season

In his first article of 2019, Crawley MP Henry Smith talks about Open Doors World Watch List.

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One of the most important events in my parliamentary calendar takes place later this month. Wednesday 16th January marks the launch of this year’s Open Doors World Watch List.

The World Watch List is a detailed record of the 50 countries where it is most difficult to live as a Christian. Overall, the level of persecution has risen for the fifth year in a row, and being open about what you believe in can lead to beatings, imprisonment, discrimination and abuse. Last year’s list named North Korea the most dangerous country to worship openly.

I am grateful to the Crawley residents who have contacted me in support of Open Doors’ work, not just at this time but all year round. Ahead of the publication of the 2018 report I was pleased to speak in the House of Commons in support of the charity’s efforts standing up for persecuted Christians around the world.

A few years ago I visited Iraqi refugees, listening to individuals affected as a result of the Syrian and Iraqi civil wars. In addition to a greater insight into the horrors of Daesh/ISIS, the visit also highlighted how we must cherish the freedoms we hold dear.

As we approach the twelfth day of Christmas, it is important to reflect on those who have not been able to celebrate the festive season, and who do not have decorations to take down. These are representations I will continue to make with the Prime Minister.

Gatwick

Flights to Europe from Gatwick will be unaffected if a no-deal Brexit happens

It has been a point of much debate across Crawley and naturally within Gatwick itself.

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But today Crawley MP got confirmation that in the case of a no-deal Brexit passengers can relax as there would be no problems with flights in and out of Gatwick to Europe.

Speaking in the House of Commons Henry Smith MP asked:

“Can he (the minister) confirm that there are aviation agreements in place so that planes will be flying to and from Gatwick and other uk airports on March 30th?”

The transport secretary, while brief in response, confirmed that a whole fleet of aviation agreements are in place.

This confirmation will come as a welcome response to both airlines, airports and passengers who have been wondering for quite some time what the situation would be in if a no-deal Brexit occurred.

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