AN MP has hailed a Parliamentary victory for British soldiers.

North East Hampshire MP Ranil Jayawardena has celebrated a win in his campaign against the unfair prosecution of British soldiers.

Mr Jayawardena was one of 291 MPs who voted for an amendment to the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill, which committed the government to introducing a presumption of non-prosecution for veterans of the Troubles where no compelling new evidence existed against them.

He said: “This vote is a significant step towards achieving justice for our veterans. I recently spoke at the Armed Forces Day parade in Odiham and was proud to salute the fantastic servicemen and women from RAF Odiham. The idea that they could one day, half a century from now, have to defend themselves against false allegations made about their conduct should be ridiculous – but this is exactly what is happening to Northern Ireland veterans today.

“However, 218 Labour and Liberal Democrat MPs voted against backing our troops – so we need your help to ensure Parliament fully understands the strength of feeling in the country.

“If you want to protect our servicemen and women from unfair prosecution, then I urge you to sign the petition I launched with Aldershot MP Leo Docherty at: – and share it with your family and friends.”