James Heappey debates involving the Department for International Trade during the 2019 Parliament

Oral Answers to Questions

James Heappey Excerpts
Tuesday 12th May 2020

(2 years, 1 month ago)

Commons Chamber
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Sheryll Murray Portrait Mrs Sheryll Murray (South East Cornwall) (Con)
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What steps his Department is taking to commemorate VE Day.

James Heappey Portrait The Minister for the Armed Forces (James Heappey) [V]
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I am sure the whole country was disappointed that the planned parades and commemorations could not take place, but the activities we did manage were, I felt, still a very fitting tribute to the greatest generation. From the Red Arrows over London to our ships at sea and the military banners in the gardens of Downing Street, I was proud of the way our armed forces still managed to mark such an important moment for our nation.

Sheryll Murray Portrait Mrs Murray [V]
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My dad fought in Burma during the second world war, and clearly VJ Day has always been very significant to my family. What plans does my hon. Friend have to celebrate VJ Day in the middle of August?

James Heappey Portrait James Heappey [V]
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First, may I thank my hon. Friend for her unstinting support for our nation’s armed forces? Like everybody, I am hoping the lockdown measures will have been lifted further to allow us to celebrate and commemorate VJ Day properly later in the summer. That day is every bit as important as VE Day, and the MOD wants to make sure that it is marked just as enthusiastically.

Paul Bristow Portrait Paul Bristow (Peterborough) (Con)
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What support his Department has provided to the overseas territories during the covid-19 pandemic.

James Heappey Portrait The Minister for the Armed Forces (James Heappey) [V]
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HMS Medway and RFA Argus, along with 30 military personnel, are currently deployed in the Caribbean, and our garrisons in the overseas territories have been engaged in supporting the local communities as they are required.

Paul Bristow Portrait Paul Bristow [V]
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It is great to hear how our country has helped the Caribbean overseas territories during this emergency. Will the Minister also assure me that our armed forces will have enough resources to support any future humanitarian assistance or disaster relief, if that is needed?

James Heappey Portrait James Heappey [V]
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People in the overseas territories will be reassured to see their plight being raised by my hon. Friend in the House today. HMS Medway and RFA Argus are already on post in the Caribbean, but additional naval assets and personnel are on standby. The commitment of our armed forces to support the overseas territories in times of pandemic or national disaster, or whatever else, is unwavering.

Christian Wakeford Portrait Christian Wakeford (Bury South) (Con)
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What support his Department has provided to veterans during the covid-19 outbreak.