LONDON – In her traditional Christmas message, the United Kingdom’s Prime Minister Theresa May lauded on Sunday members of the country’s emergency services who aided the victims of terror attacks and other tragedies over the past year and called for unity.
May – the daughter of a vicar – also said Britons should take pride in the UK’s “Christian heritage” and its shared values of love, service and compassion.
She thanked “the heroes in our emergency services, whose courage and dedication so inspired the nation in response to tragedy at Grenfell Tower and the abhorrent terrorist attacks in Manchester and London.”
In contrast to her 2016 Christmas message, this time the Conservative leader avoided any mention of Brexit – the UK’s looming withdrawal from the European Union that is currently being negotiated – although she did ask citizens to “come together confident and united in the values we share.”
May also said that in the UK, everyone could practice their faith “free from question or fear.”
Meanwhile, the leader of the opposition Labour party, Jeremy Corbyn, said in his own message that people should take time to think about those who were “cut off and lonely” or living in war-torn regions.
He called on Britons to “show them you care,” adding that the UK was a “compassionate nation.”
“And abroad we think of those living in nations like Yemen, Syria and Libya in fear of bombs and bullets, of injury and death,” Corbyn said.