Tobias Ellwood Resigns as Defence Committee Chairman Amid Expected Vote of No Confidence
Multiple reports indicate that Tobias Ellwood, the Conservative former defence minister, has resigned from his position as chairman of the Defence Committee. His decision comes ahead of an anticipated vote of no confidence, stemming from controversy over his statements regarding security in Afghanistan.
Controversial Statements and Backlash
Ellwood had faced criticism from fellow committee members during the summer after making claims that security conditions in Afghanistan had “vastly improved” and that “corruption is down” since the return of fundamentalists in 2021. He also advocated for the reopening of Britain’s embassy in Kabul, aligning with the European Union’s move to re-establish a physical presence in the region.
Despite issuing an apology for his remarks, members of the cross-party committee were determined to remove him from his prominent role. A no-confidence motion was submitted on July 19, and a notice period of 10 sitting days for such motions was set to expire on Thursday.
Fellow Conservative MPs Mark Francois and Richard Drax, along with Labour’s Kevan Jones and Derek Twigg, joined forces to submit the motion. The expectation was that Ellwood would face increasing pressure to retain his chairmanship.
Ellwood’s resignation has not been officially confirmed at this time, and he has not provided a comment on the matter.