Settlement rules to be relaxed
Rules barring foreign and Commonwealth troops serving in the British armed forces from settling in the UK if they incur even minor disciplinary convictions are to be relaxed, it has emerged.
The Home Office will announce that personnel with only minor disciplinary records will be able to stay on in Britain after they leave the services, Channel 4 News reported.
The rule change is expected to come into force before Christmas so that troops facing redundancy in the new year will be covered.
The move follows a high-profile campaign by former senior military figures who have accused the Government of letting down personnel who have served Britain loyally in war zones around the world.
A Home Office spokesman said: "We recognise the immense sacrifices and contribution made by our armed forces. Foreign and Commonwealth military personnel who have served for more than four years can apply to settle here up to two years after leaving the military.
"We have also reviewed the criteria for granting settlement rights - including how military convictions can affect immigration and nationality decisions - and we will be making an announcement shortly."