Edward Mountain MSP today commended the sacrifices of service personnel during their twenty-year deployment to Afghanistan during a Holyrood Debate.
During his speech Edward Mountain also highlighted the support the UK Government is providing for Afghans arriving in the UK.
‘Operation Warm Welcome’ which was announced by the UK Government on Wednesday 1 September, promises to ensure Afghans resettling in the UK receive vital support to rebuild their lives, find work, pursue education and integrate into their local communities.
This significant package of support includes £12 million to provide additional school places, £3 million to support access to the NHS and up to 300 university scholarships.
This comes on top of the UK Government’s commitment of £200 million to the Afghanistan Citizens Resettlement Scheme as well.
In his speech, Edward Mountain said:
“It’s almost twenty years since we deployed forces in Afghanistan. Our servicemen and women and their families have been under constant strain.
“457 of them have given their lives and over 2,200 have been injured.
“Many of those who served out there will be asking what it was all for. I have had these discussions with many ex-servicemen and women, including my son who served in Afghanistan.
“And the answer I told him and the others that I have spoken to is that in the twenty-year deployment we gave hope to the oppressed and prevented Afghanistan from being used as a terrorist base.
“That is a huge achievement - one that the UK should rightly be proud of.
“No life lost protecting freedom is ever wasted unless those that benefit from those freedoms don’t remember the debt they owe. I won’t and we shouldn’t."