THE MOTHER of a Glasgow soldier who was killed at the age of 19 while fighting in Iraq has called on Sir Tony Blair to refuse his Knighthood awarded to him in the New Year Honours.

Rose Gentle said she was in shock when she learned the news and after it began to sink in she felt disgusted and was left asking the question what did her son Gordon's life mean?

Gordon, from Pollok, died after a bomb planted by the side of a road in Basra, Iraq was detonated as his Land Rover passed.

Private Gentle, who served with the Royal Highland Fusiliers, was straight out of basic training when he died in June, 2004. He had been been sent to Iraq with only 26 weeks training.

HeraldScotland: Rose Gentle is calling for Sir Tony Blair to hand back his KnighthoodRose Gentle is calling for Sir Tony Blair to hand back his Knighthood

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Mrs Gentle said: "I feel this is a slap in the face for me and all the families who lost someone in Iraq. What did our sons' lives mean?

"The families' sacrifices mean nothing to Blair."

Mr Blair became Sir Tony after he was appointed by the Queen to the Order of the Garter, the oldest and most senior British Order of Chivalry.

And today Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer says Mr Blair has earned a knighthood but Boris Johnson hasn’t.

The UK Labour leader defended his predecessor’s knighthood in the New Year honours, as a petition demanding it be rescinded attracted almost 600,000 supporters.

It led to a backlash over his domestic record and taking the UK into the Iraq War.

Mrs Gentle, 58, is now calling on the former Prime Minister to refuse the honour.

HeraldScotland: Private Gordon Gentle was killed in Iraq at the age of 19Private Gordon Gentle was killed in Iraq at the age of 19

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The grieving mum added: "This has got to be stopped now. I don't see why he should have this honour - for what? Taking our boys? And now the current Labour Leader has come out in support.

"I want Blair to refuse the honour. I have added my name to the 600,000 strong petition and will be contacting my local MPs and MSPs to have this raised at both parliaments."

The longest-serving Labour PM said it was an "immense honour" to have been made a Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, the oldest and most senior British Order of Chivalry, to which appointments are in the Queen's gift without advice from the Government.

The newly-styled Sir Tony said he was "deeply grateful" to the Queen and added: "It was a great privilege to serve as prime minister and I would like to thank all those who served alongside me, in politics, public service and all parts of our society, for their dedication and commitment to our country."