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Gurkhas recognised 50 years after conflict
9:58am Wednesday 4th September 2013 in News
DOZENS of Gurkhas have been recognised for fighting in a Malayan conflict more than 50 years ago.
Soldiers who live across the east of England gathered in Colchester yesterday to be recognised by the Malaysian Government.
Around 170 Gurkhas were presented with the Pingat Jasa Malaysia medal.
It is the first time they have been recognised by the Malaysian Government for their part in the conflict.
Khemraj Sunuwar, 70, of Colchester, served as a sapper in the Gurkha Engineers in Malaysia from 1964 to 1966.
He said: “It was a very difficult time for us all.
“We were always fighting in the Malaysian jungle against militia.
“It was raining every day and very difficult. We joined the British Army, trained for nine months and then went straight there.
“Today is a good day. We fought in the conflict and were never given any recognition by the Malaysian Government. The medal is important.”
The Malayan Emergency lasted from 1948 to 1960 saw Commonwealth forces defeat insurgents from the communist Malayan National Liberation Army.
Troops remained in Malaysia until 1966 because of tensions with neighbouring Indonesia.
The Gurkhas were given a general service medal by the British Government following the conflict but have never been recognised by the Malasia.
On Tuesday the Gurkhas were presented with the medal by Malaysian defence attache Brigadier General Othman Bin Jamal.
They held a ceremony at the Territorial Army Centre, on Circular Road East.
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