Parliamentary tributes to Del Singh

The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition led the tributes to Del Singh during Wednesday’s Prime Minister’s questions:

The Prime Minister (Mr David Cameron): I am sure that the whole House would want to join me in paying tribute to Del Singh and to Simon Chase who were tragically killed in Kabul on Sunday in a cowardly terrorist attack. Both were there to support the Afghan Government and to improve the lives of the Afghan people. Del Singh was a friend to many in the House and had given so much time and dedication to troubled regions across the world. Our thoughts should be with their families and friends at this very difficult time.

Edward Miliband (Doncaster North) (Lab): I want to start by paying tribute to the two British nationals, Simon Chase and Del Singh, who were killed in a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan. Simon Chase had served Britain in the Army, and my condolences go to all his family and friends. Del Singh was one of Labour’s European candidates, and one of the most decent people one could ever hope to meet. He was an international development worker who dedicated his life to helping people across the world, and we all grieve with his family.

Mr Andy Slaughter (Hammersmith) (Lab): May I also thank the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition for their kind words about my friend Del Singh, who devoted his too-short life to working for peace and justice, not least in Palestine and Afghanistan?

Emma Reynolds (Wolverhampton North East) (Lab): Del Singh was an extraordinary person: a warm and generous friend, and a passionate campaigner for peace and justice. He dedicated his life to working for those in need in areas of conflict, including in Afghanistan. Will the Prime Minister assure the House that, after the drawdown of troops this year, the work of people such as Del Singh will continue to be supported by this Government?

The Prime Minister: I very much share what she said about Del Singh. It reminds us of the risks that aid workers take on our behalf to deliver vital assistance around the world. I can give her the assurance she seeks. It is very important for everyone to recognise that, while our troops are coming home at the end of 2014, our commitment to Afghanistan will continue: not just our commitment to its armed forces but, with more than $100 million a year, our commitment to its aid and future development. We will need many more brave people such as Del Singh to go on working with the Afghan Government to deliver for the Afghan people.

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