THE SNP international affairs spokesperson has renewed calls for accountability over the Iraq War.

Stephen Gethins MP said that there must be consequences for the “biggest mistake in recent history” after new claims made by Gordon Brown – who voted for the invasion of Iraq of 2003 – that the UK was “misled” on the case for war.

Brown, who was chancellor at the time, told a Sunday newspaper that there was US intelligence that “forcibly challenged” the existence of Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq and concluded “war could not be justified”. He was part of Tony Blair’s Labour government at the time and has recently been promoting his new memoirs due out this week.

It follows Sir John Chilcot’s conclusion that Tony Blair “was not straight” with the country, and had given a pre-determined commitment to President Bush in July 2002.

“The Iraq War was the UK’s biggest foreign policy mistake in recent history,” said Gethins, “and there must be accountability for the actions of a Labour government that led the country into an illegal war that caused the deaths of 179 UK armed forces personnel and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians. The consequences of that war continue to be felt to this day with Iraq still suffering from conflict and civil war.

“On publishing his excoriating report, Sir John Chilcot concluded that Tony Blair ‘was not straight’ with the nation and, contrary to his denials, had given a pre-determined commitment to President Bush in July 2002 to join US military action in Iraq – telling him ‘I will be with you, whatever’.”

Gethins added that many had been forced to deal with the consequences of the “illegal war” and that lessons must be learned.

“The decision by Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and the Labour government to go to war has had devastating consequences, not least for the people of Iraq and the families of military personnel who lost their lives, and continue to live with the consequences of that decision,” he said. “We must have accountability over that and confidence that lessons have been learned and such a grave mistakes cannot happen again.”