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PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS FROM PS2 THE LEADING U.K. GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS COMPANY
Contact: ps2@btinternet.com

DEFENCE
19 Mechanised Brigade
Mr. Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which units will make up 19 Mechanised Brigade as it is deployed to Operation Telic 2; and when deployments will commence. [123573]
Mr. Ingram: The following units will make up 19 (Mechanised) Brigade, during its period of deployment to Iraq:

19 (Mechanised) Brigade Headquarters and Signal Squadron
The Regimental Headquarters and two Squadrons from the Light Dragoons
B Squadron, 2nd Royal Tank Regiment
1st Battalion, the King’s Regiment
1st Battalion, the Queen’s Lancashire Regiment
1st Battalion the King’s Own Scottish Borderers
4/73 Observation Post Battery from 5th Regiment Royal Artillery
40th Regiment Royal Artillery
38th Engineer Regiment (including 100 Squadron, Royal Monmouthshire,
Royal Engineers (Militia))
The Brigade will also deploy with a Brigade Support Group, comprising of:
32 Brigade Support Squadron, from 3 Close Support Regiment, Royal Logistic Corps.
150 Provost Company, from 3 Royal Military Police
A Close Support Company, from 5 Battalion Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers

A Close Support Medical Squadron, from 3 Close Support Medical Regiment
The Brigade has already deployed to Iraq and assumed command from 7th Armoured Brigade on 28 June 2003.

Combat Aircraft
Mr. Keetch: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many RAF and Royal Navy combat aircraft were available for operations on 1 January 2003; and how many are planned to be available on (a) 1 January 2008, (b) 1 January 2013 and (c) 1 January 2018. [119492]
Mr. Ingram: As of 1 January 2003, the RAF and RN combat (fast jet) aircraft Actual Operating Fleet figure was 306 aircraft. The numbers of aircraft available on 1 January 2008, 2013 and 2018 will depend upon our operational requirements at the time.
4 Jul 2003 : Column 501W
European Peacekeeping Force
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which units flagged for deployment with the European peacekeeping force are (a) deployed and (b) undeployable owing to roulement; what proportion by category of unit or establishment this comprises; and if he will make a statement. [123046]
Mr. Ingram: There is no such force as the “European peacekeeping force”.
Infantry Battalions
Andrew Selous: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to his answer of 23 June 2003, Official Report, column 538W, on infantry numbers, whether Ministers have had discussions with the Director of Infantry about disbanding infantry battalions. [122986]
Mr. Ingram: Ministers have had no discussions with the Director of Infantry about disbanding infantry battalions.
Iraq
Mr. Tynan: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many sites in Iraq suspected of links to possible covert weapons of mass destruction programmes have been searched by (a) the Iraq Survey Group and (b) other coalition personnel; and how many identified suspect sites have yet to be searched. [121289]
Mr. Ingram: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer my right hon. Friend the Defence Secretary gave on 26 June 2003, Official Report, column 938W to my hon. Friend the Member for Newport, West (Paul Flynn).
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what representations he has made to the USA concerning incidences of ‘friendly fire’ against British troops in Iraq. [108850]
Mr. Ingram: We worked closely with the United States to ensure that effective Combat Identification arrangements were in place before the start of operations in Iraq. United Kingdom forces’ Combat Identification capability is compatible and comparable with that of our US allies, but regrettably no system can be 100 per cent. fail-safe.
Both incidents of “friendly fire” that occurred during operations against Iraq involving US and UK forces are the subject of Boards of Inquiry, which have now conven

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