Nick Clegg and Paddy Ashdown win the argument on Afghan interpreters

The BBC reports:

Up to 600 Afghan interpreters who worked alongside British troops are to be given the right to live in the UK, government sources have confirmed.

The plan marks a climbdown from ministers who had decided they should not get the same UK resettlement rights as interpreters in the Iraq conflict.

Afghan interpreters who worked on the front line for a year or more will initially be offered a five-year visa.

This is something, as we reported 3 weeks ago, that Nick Clegg and Paddy Ashdown have been arguing for.

Earlier this week, Paddy Ashdown said that it was Downing Street that was blocking UK visas for the interpreters. Now it seems that arguments from Nick Clegg, Paddy and other Liberal Democrats have won the day.

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  • Rightly so and long overdue. Apart from the morality aspect,, if our government were to treat WOGS (foreigners Working On Government Service) as expendable and this became known worldwide, how could our troops hope to recruit the local allies they need in future conflicts abroad ?

  • Geoffrey Payne 22nd May '13 - 12:21pm

    It is a welcome step forward, but notice that to qualify you must have been an interpreter for at least a year.

  • Interpreter by day and Al Qaeda by night.

  • Eddie Sammon 22nd May '13 - 8:38pm

    Very good point Martin. Unfortunately many “liberals” prefer kneejerk reactions towards “liberal” principles instead, whilst forgetting about security. Worst still, anyone who disagrees would probably get called a name.

  • A Social Liberal 22nd May '13 - 11:25pm

    This government has condemned even more to at least a lifetime of fear and quite possibly death at the hands of the Taliban because only ‘terps’ who are currently employed will be allowed in.

    Shame on them.

  • I’m really sorry to go off on a tangent but somebody was BUTCHERED in London today by two lunatics. What has the Lib Dem party got to say on the issue? Anything? The EDL are on the streets and people are attacking mosques and somebody has posted that they are watching Tea Cake Challenge!

    Are you deliberately trying to lose voters or are you just taking the mickey out of the public???

  • Eddie Sammon 23rd May '13 - 7:58am

    Liberals have had a problem with being soft on crime and defence for many years. I think it is primarily because they generally don’t live in working class areas so don’t have to live with the fear every day.

    Not going into Iraq was a good decision, but it’s just offensive when liberals are more concerned about gay marriage and their obsession with civil liberties, than they are about the real dangers of the day.

    Is it no wonder that we do so poorly in working class areas?

  • Eddie Sammon 23rd May '13 - 8:04am

    When I first joined the party I was welcomed with internal nuclear warfare about closed evidence proceedings for terrorism cases when national security was at risk. It was very off putting and made me think that liberals live in a parallel universe, more interested in their pet projects than the public’s concerns.

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