A SCOTTISH Government representative rubbed shoulders with "blood-soaked" arms dealers at a swanky dinner reception featuring Alastair Campbell, the Sunday National can reveal.

The Scottish Government sent an official to the annual dinner of the ADS Group, a weapons industry lobbying group that represents a number of companies with links to Israel.

MPs, UK ministers and representatives of all devolved governments in the UK attended the event, held at the swanky Grosvenor House Hotel in Mayfair, central London at the end of January.

It comes despite the Scottish Government’s fierce criticism of Israel over its devastating assault on Gaza. First Minister Humza Yousaf has accused Israel of committing war crimes in Palestine, where nearly 30,000 people have been killed since October.

Guests were addressed by Tony Blair's former spin doctor Campbell, often criticised as one of the key architects of Britain’s illegal war in Iraq.

The ADS Group represents major weapons manufacturers, many of which arm Israel and have been protested against in light of the country’s bombardment of Gaza in recent months.

READ MORE: MSPs clash over protest against arms dealer event at Holyrood

During his address to the event, ADS Group’s CEO Kevin Craven said: “I would particularly like to welcome our ADS members, lords, ladies, ministers of the UK Government, Scottish and Welsh Government representatives, members of the Northern Ireland Executive, parliamentarians, security services personnel and civil servants. 

“I know it’s not fashionable but I would also like to give a special welcome to our members – and ex-members – of the Armed Forces, and also to say thank you for your service.”

Craven then boasted of a “record-breaking” attendance of 1200.

The UK stood “at a crossroads”, warned Craven, as he urged Government representatives to pump more money into the arms industry at a time of “proliferating international security challenges”.

He was speaking on the same day as the launch of the new ADS Group “manifesto” which urged the next Government to hike defence spending above the Nato-mandated 2% of annual GDP.

It is not known which MPs attended the event, which was held as a way to allow arms manufacturers to make connections with key Westminster decision-makers.

The Scottish Greens blasted attendees, saying they should be “utterly ashamed”.

The National: ROSS GREER

Ross Greer (above), the party’s external affairs spokesperson, said: “What could be more grotesque than arms dealers gathering for a banquet while Gaza is burning?

READ MORE: Tory MSP urged to cancel 'arms dealer propaganda' Holyrood event as protests planned

“The overwhelming majority of us are horrified by the genocide and the terrible humanitarian crisis that has been inflicted, but these merchants of death have treated it as a business opportunity.”

The party also criticised Campbell’s involvement in the event, pointing to his legacy of “lies and distortions” which paved the way for the Iraq War.

Campbell (below) was involved in the preparation of two dossiers which were distributed to journalists outlining the Government’s case for invading Iraq.

The National: Alastair Campbell.

The UK Government has since admitted a key claim – about how long it would take Iraq to build a nuclear weapon – was changed to make the document “one that complements rather than conflicts with” American claims.

Greer added: “Campbell’s main political legacy is and always will be the catalogue of lies and distortions that led to nearly a million Iraqis being killed, while the companies represented by the ADS profited every step of the way.

“These arms dealers aren’t inviting MPs for dinner out of kindness, they are doing it to win favour and influence in the corridors of power and to push for the same kind of disastrous ‘bomb first, ask later’ policies that Campbell propagated.

“It is telling that so few MPs have publicly admitted to going to such a horrific event, but every single one who did should be utterly ashamed.”

Greer last week reportedly found himself the subject of a complaint from a member of the public to Holyrood’s Ethical Standards Commissioner after attending a protest which had attempted to prevent an ADS Group event in the Scottish Parliament from going ahead.

The National: Stephen Kerr

Tory MSP Stephen Kerr accused Greer of trying to “shut down this Parliament”.

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “A Scottish Government official attended this event – in recognition of our work to help firms diversify their activities and technologies, ensuring Scotland continues to benefit from significant economic returns and thousands of jobs in the sector.”

Campbell and the ADS Group did not respond to requests for comment.