British premier promises Gurkhas rights

May 6th, 2009 - 10:31 pm ICT by IANS  

Gordon Brown London, May 6 (IANS) British Prime Minister Gordon Brown assured Wednesday he will come up with a new policy that will satisfy demands by Gurkha ex-soldiers to be given the right to live in Britain, a leading campaigner said.
“I feel absolutely confident he’s going to do the right thing by the Gurkhas,” actress Joanna Lumley said after a meeting with the British leader Wednesday.

Lumley described the meeting as “extremely positive” and the prime minister as “a man of integrity”, but refused to divulge further details of their discussions.

The Labour government came under strong criticism from opposition political parties and others last month after unveiling a policy that campaigners said would deny residency rights to the overwhelming majority of Gurkha ex-soldiers who have served in the British Army.

But Lumley declared after the meeting that Brown was “wholly supportive of the Gurkha cause”.

“He’s going to come up with a new solution by the end of this month. I trust him; I rely on him. And I know he has now taken this matter into his own hands,” she said.

Lumley said she wants the government to give Gurkhas “parity with Commonwealth soldiers” so that any Gurkha who had served in the British Army for four years would have the right to live in Britain.

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