Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Falklands vote to stay British!

Update: you can watch the debate here:
On Tuesday I was lucky enough to secure the chance for MP’s to discuss the results of the Falkland Islands Referendum. Yesterday it was announced that the Islanders overwhelmingly voted in favour of remaining a British Overseas Territory (BOT), with only 3 voting against, a majority of 99.9%.

In the House of Commons I reminded the House of Able Seaman Derek Armstrong, from Prudhoe in Northumberland, who died when HMS Ardent was sunk on 22 May 1982. He was only 22 years of age. All troops, on all sides, should be remembered. We should pay particular tribute to those who are serving there and giving up their time to look after the Falkland Islands on an ongoing basis.

The House was united, on all sides of the political spectrum, behind the Falkland Islands right to remain a BOT, something that I had been keen to achieve.

I asked for the debate because I wanted to send a clear message, not only to Argentina and the Falklands, but to the rest of the world. As long as the Islanders want to remain British, we will stand full-square behind them and support them in their wishes. I also wanted to pay tribute to those fallen soldiers, including Mr. Armstrong, who gave the ultimate sacrifice. We will always remember them, and those loved ones that are currently serving right around the world.