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Forces Day marred by uncertainty - Jarvis

Monday 2nd July 2012
Dan Jarvis

Barnsley Central MP and former para trooper Dan Jarvis has called for the government to remove 'the cloud of uncertainty' hanging over The Yorkshire Regiment.

 

On Saturday people across Yorkshire and Barnsley celebrated the work of men and women in the armed forces as part of Armed Forces Day.

 

However, Mr Jarvis said: "Armed Forces Day 2012 comes at a time of great uncertainty for much of our Armed Forces, including of course, those who serve in The Yorkshire Regiment.

 

“Well-sourced reports have suggested that it is the intention of the Defence Secretary to abolish The 3rd Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment and that only political posturing from David Cameron is holding up the announcement."

 

He added: "The continued speculation is very damaging to the morale of our troops. I know that without good morale, even the basics are difficult. With good morale, almost anything is achievable."

 

Mr Jarvis along with Barnsley MPs Michael Dugher and Angela Smith, hand-delivered a letter to the Defence Secretary Philip Hammond last month.

 

The move came after speculation that the battalion, which recruits heavily in Barnsley, would be axed as part of the government's armed forces spending cuts.

 

The letter claimed it was 'unacceptable' to scrap the battalion when it was 'performing duties magnificently in Afghanistan at very considerable danger'.

 

Mr Jarvis, who served in The Paras on tours of Iraq and Afghanistan, says he will continue to press Mr Hammond to clarify the matter.

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