PM praises Colchester troops for 'incredible' work in Afghanistan evacuation

Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Merville Barracks in Colchester, Essex, to meet membe

Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a visit to Merville Barracks in Colchester - Credit: PA

Prime Minister Boris Johnson was in Essex on Thursday to meet with soldiers. 

Mr Johnson visited Merville Barracks to meet with members of the 16 Air Assault Brigade.

The Brigade recently returned from Afghanistan where they had been deployed to enable the safe evacuation of British nationals and Afghans who worked alongside British forces and who had been given the right to settle in the UK.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson alongside members of 16 Air Assault Brigade at the Brigade Headquarters

Prime Minister Boris Johnson alongside members of 16 Air Assault Brigade - Credit: PA

During his visit to the Barracks he gave a short address to the troops. 

“Mainly, I want to say what an incredible thing you’ve just done," he said.


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"There’s literally nothing like it, not just in my lifetime, but I don’t think this century or for the last 100 years or longer.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets members of 16 Air Assault Brigade at the Brigade Headquarters at

Prime Minister Boris Johnson praised the work of the Colchester troops - Credit: PA

Mr Johnson said the operation was “nothing like the Berlin airlift” or other military evacuations, adding: “This wasn’t just a military evacuation, this was the biggest-ever humanitarian airlift in the history of this country, and I don’t think anybody expected that you would bring back 16,000 people.

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“It was an extraordinary feat of endurance, patience, care, thought, planning, and I think you should all be incredibly proud of what you’ve just done and I know the whole country is incredibly proud of you for what you did.”



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