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Volume 611: debated on Monday 20 June 2016

[Mr Speaker in the Chair]

Death of a Member

Colleagues, we meet today in heart-breaking sadness, but also in heartfelt solidarity. Any death in such awful circumstances is an outrage and a tragedy. Yet this death in this manner of this person, our democratically elected colleague, Jo Cox, is particularly shocking and repugnant.

All of us who came to know Jo during her all-too-short service in this House became swiftly aware of her outstanding qualities. She was caring, eloquent, principled and wise. Above all, she was filled with, and fuelled by, love for humanity. Devoted to her family and a relentless campaigner for equality, human rights and social justice, Jo was proud to be the Member of Parliament for Batley and Spen, where she had her roots and where she was determined to live life to the full. She succeeded superbly.

Jo was murdered in the course of her duty, serving constituents in need. She fought for them just as she fought for others—at home and abroad—who were victims of poverty, discrimination or injustice. An attack such as this strikes not only at an individual, but at our freedom. That is why we assemble here both to honour Jo and to redouble our dedication to democracy.