Mercer: We must protect veterans from the courts

MP Johnny Mercer has said that “we can’t rest” until we end the farce of prosecuting veterans in relation to the Troubles in Northern Ireland.

The MP, a former Army Captain, tweeted: “Were going to kick this one off again.

“We can’t rest until this betrayal of dragging our servicemen and women through the courts decades after service ends.

“I’m determined we will do that in this Parliament.”

The Defence Committee announced yesterday that it was renewing its calls for the State to protect veterans facing investigations into killings during the Northern Ireland Troubles.

In a letter sent to the Northern Ireland Secretary, Dr Julian Lewis MP, Chairman of the Defence Committee said the government had previously agreed to look into statutes of limitations, however, Lewis writes:

“We were, therefore, particularly disappointed and frankly surprised that, when the consultation was published last month, it contained no such section on alternative approaches to the past that included a description of our recommendations.

“In our report, we repeated our warning from our IHAT inquiry that “in adhering to the pursuit of justice and the rule of law, the Government must not lose sight of its moral responsibility and its commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant.

“The government has a moral duty to defend those who served in the defence of our country, whether that was in Northern Ireland, Iraq or Afghanistan.”

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It’s a sad state of affairs when the State is prepared to prosecute war heroes and not returning jihadis…