No 10 denies Lumley 'Gurkha snub'

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No 10 has denied it snubbed requests from Joanna Lumley for a meeting with the prime minister over the right of Gurkhas to settle in the UK.

The actress and campaigner said she wrote three letters to Mr Brown over the issue but none were acknowledged.

Ms Lumley wants all Gurkhas to be given equal right to settle in the UK, no matter when they served in the British army.

Some 36,000 Gurkhas - a brigade of Nepalese soldiers who serve in the British Army - have been denied UK residency because they left before 1997.

The government is reviewing its rules for admitting Gurkhas after it lost a Commons vote on the issue last week, in what was a major blow to Gordon Brown's leadership.

Ministers have again defended their policy on the Gurkhas, amid claims that they are overstating the likely cost of allowing all the ex-soldiers to live in the UK.

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