Newton welcomes progress on Gurkha pension rights

EAST Belfast MLA Robin Newton has welcomed a response from the Government in support of Gurkha veterans and their pension rights.

Following a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson he has received a response, from the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State and Minister for Defence People and Veterans, Leo Docherty.

Commenting, the DUP MLA said, "Gurkha veterans, the bravest of the brave, as they have often been called, deserve to same pension rights as other veterans. I’m pleased they called off their ‘fast unto death’ opposite the entrance to Downing Street. it’s not an action they should have had to take.’

‘Mr Docherty has informed me a meeting to discuss the issues will be held this month. I welcomed this as a positive forward step. The decision to engage with the Gurkha veterans. who Leo Docherty describes as ‘highly regarded,’ will enable all parties to move forward in step. It is key that these brave veterans are well represented at the meeting and I’m pleased to note the Nepali Ambassador will also be present. The Gurkhas are a very special unit in the Army. They are among the most feared soldiers in the world and are much respected. They have served Her Majesty faithfully and have earned the regard of all soldiers. They deserve equivalent pensions.”

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