Thursday, March 23, 2017
WE WILL NEVER GIVE IN
Extracts from Prime Minister Theresa May's speech to the House of Commons today. The full text is available on the government website here.
"Mr Speaker, yesterday an act of terrorism tried to silence our democracy.
But today we meet as normal – as generations have done before us, and as future generations will continue to do – to deliver a simple message: we are not afraid. And our resolve will never waiver in the face of terrorism.
And we meet here, in the oldest of all Parliaments, because we know that democracy, and the values it entails, will always prevail.
Those values – free speech, liberty, human rights and the rule of law – are embodied here in this place, but they are shared by free people around the world.
A terrorist came to the place where people of all nationalities and cultures gather to celebrate what it means to be free. And he took out his rage indiscriminately against innocent men, women and children.
Mr Speaker, this was an attack on free people everywhere – and on behalf of the British people, I would like to thank our friends and allies around the world who have made it clear that they stand with us at this time.
What happened on the streets of Westminster yesterday afternoon sickened us all."
"Tragically, as the House will know, 48-year-old PC Keith Palmer, was killed.
PC Palmer had devoted his life to the service of his country. He had been a member of the Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command for 15 years, and a soldier in the Royal Artillery before that.
He was a husband and a father, killed doing a job he loved.
He was every inch a hero. And his actions will never be forgotten.
I know the whole House will join me in sending our deepest condolences to his family – and to the families and friends of all those who have been killed or injured in yesterday’s awful attacks.
I know also that the House will wish to thank all those who acted with such speed and professionalism yesterday to secure this place and ensure we are able to meet as we are doing today."
Mr Speaker, yesterday we saw the worst of humanity, but we will remember the best.
We will remember the extraordinary efforts to save the life of PC Keith Palmer, including those by my Rt Hon Friend the Member for Bournemouth East.
And we will remember the exceptional bravery of our police, security and emergency services who once again ran towards the danger even as they encouraged others to move the other way.
On behalf of the whole country I want to pay tribute to them for the work they have been doing to reassure the public, treat the injured and bring security back to the streets of our capital city.
That they have lost one of their own in yesterday’s attack only makes their calmness and professionalism all the more remarkable."
"Mr Speaker, a lot has been said since terror struck London yesterday. Much more will be said in the coming days.
But the greatest response lies not in the words of politicians, but in the everyday actions of ordinary people.
For beyond these walls today – in scenes repeated in towns and cities across the country – millions of people are going about their days and getting on with their lives.
The streets are as busy as ever.
The offices full. The coffee shops and cafes bustling.
As I speak millions will be boarding trains and aeroplanes to travel to London, and to see for
themselves the greatest city on Earth.
It is in these actions – millions of acts of normality – that we find the best response to terrorism.
A response that denies our enemies their victory. That refuses to let them win. That shows we will never give in.
A response driven by that same spirit that drove a husband and father to put himself between us and our attacker, and to pay the ultimate price.
A response that says to the men and women who propagate this hate and evil: you will not defeat us.
Mr Speaker, let this be the message from this House and this nation today: our values will prevail."