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PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS

PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS

10 Jan 08. US Missile Defence: House of Lords Debate. The House of Lords debated (10 Jan 08) “….the United Kingdom’s commitment to participate in the United States’ missile defence system….”.
Comment: The Debate was held against the background of the installation of new equipment at Menwith Hill and the switching on of the enhanced radar at RAF Fylingdales. Introducing the Debate, Lord Wallace of Saltaire was also concerned about a lack of discussion of the matter in the Commons despite promises by the previous Prime Minister. The Debate is recorded in (Lords) Hansard, starting at Column 949.

10 Jan 08. Personnel: House of Commons Debate. The Defence Secretary introduced a Debate (10 Jan 08) on Armed Forces Personnel, reminding Members of Parliament that the MoD had “launched a cross-Government personnel strategy”. Matters to be considered included accommodation, education, health, welfare, social care,inquests and veterans’ support.
Comment: Little that was new arose from the Debate, which is recorded in Hansard starting at Column 578.

House of Commons

7 Jan 2008

Armed Forces: Weapons

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which less-than-lethal weapons and non-lethal weapons are available for use by armed forces personnel; how many personnel are qualified for those weapons in each branch of the forces; and how much training is required annually to maintain that qualification.
[173721]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The only non-lethal weapons used by our armed forces are the L104 and L67 baton guns. Information on the number of personnel trained in the use of these weapons is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Neither of these weapons is permanently held by units; they are issued to meet the requirements of specific theatres of operation. When these weapons are required, nominated personnel will receive appropriate training in their use prior to deployment. Those personnel trained in handling such weapons, who are required to maintain their proficiency, will need to pass
a weapons handling test every six months and take part in an annual weapons assessment shoot as is the case for any weapon. In addition to baton rounds, these weapons can also be used to fire a CS gas grenade, the L96A1, for law enforcement operations at the discretion of unit commanders in theatre. The necessary instruction is delivered during unit pre-deployment training.

Armoured Fighting Vehicles

Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether the Supercat
vehicle is classed as a (a) protected, (b) unprotected or (c) patrol vehicle.
[175210]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: We have a number of Supacat-based vehicles, used for specialist roles. The most numerous are the All Terrain Mobility Platform
(ATMP), and the Mobility-Weapon Mount Installation Kit (M-WMIK) which will enter service shortly. The ATMP does not have a specific classification. It was procured as a lightweight load carrying vehicle used by airborne and airmobile units. The M-WMIK, like all WMIK vehicles, is designed as a carrier for medium support weapons, providing high levels of terrain accessibility, situational awareness and firepower. It complements the use of Protected Patrol Vehicles.

Armoured Fighting Vehicles: Afghanistan

Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer
of 6 December 2007, Official Report, column 1402W, on armoured fighting vehicles: Afghanistan, whether the 170 Vector vehicles are in addition to the
160 previously ordered. [173963]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: We have ordered over 170 Vector vehicles in all, comprising a
small number of specialist ambulances in addition to the original order.

Army’s Total Fleet Requirement 2007
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library a copy of the Army’s Total Fleet Requirement 2007. [174482]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: I will arrange for a copy

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