Just received by email.
At midday today, Home Secretary Jacqui Smith made the announcement to the House of Commons that the Gurkha Justice Campaign have been fighting for for years. All ex-Gurkhas who have served more than 4 years in the British Army will have the right to settle in the UK if they wish.
After such a long fight, with huge ups and downs, this is a superb announcement.
We simply would not have won this fight without the massive, overwhelming support of all those who have supported our campaign. To the hundreds of thousands of people who have signed Gurkha Justice petitions, lobbied their MP, campaigned, attended rallies and marches - thank you so much to you all. This is your victory. It would not have happened without you.
The Government has now responded to that campaign after court cases, votes in Parliament, a huge media campaign and, most importantly, massive public support. I am delighted, and humbled, at what has been achieved by our remarkable team.
The whole campaign has been based on the belief that those who have fought and been prepared to die for our country should have the the right to live in our country. We owe them a debt of honour - a debt that will now be paid.
The Gurkhas that decide to come to Britain will be welcome, hard working, honest ruthlessly efficient men, welcome Gentlemen. I bet there are a few " working girls " quaking in Aldershot tonight, gonna have to work for it again girls.
Several years ago we visited a musuem dedicated to the history of the Gurkha military, I think it was in Winchester. We came away feeling very humbled at the thought of all these people had done for our country yet, until we went to the museum, we knew so little about them.
Its a great result.
It's about time the Gurkha's got looked after properly, obviously still problems of sorts with they way we treat them; and I never cease to be amazed at the poor way that the UK looks after it's friends, so for everything to be tickety boo would be almost impossible.
Living in Reading which isn't a million miles away from Aldershot where I believe a lot of Gurkha's are based, and having written my car off a couple of years ago (for some reason my wife doesn't like me driving hers!!!) I use the buses quite a lot, I can always tell the drivers who are ex Gurkha's. They all look smart, are very polite; and funnily enough there never seems to be any "yob" trouble on their buses.
My old Dad who served in WW2 had a lot of good time for them, and although they may be 4' nothing tall, to coin a phrase from my son - they are proper hardcore!!
The criminal way in which we (or rather our government) have treated these valiant friends of ours makes me ashamed. I certainly hope all the problems are sorted double quick so we can look them in the eyes in the future and know we have done them right.