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Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which air squadrons are at less than 90 per cent. of full complement of (a) pilots and (b) navigators, indicating a percentage figure for each squadron. 
Mr. Ingram: The table sets out the overall snapshot position, by service, using wherever possible the early October data used in my answer of 15 October 2001, Official Report, column 942W. In some instances however, the information post-dates that information.
Indicating the level to which a squadron is manned in a snapshot in time using a percentage formula risks creating a misleading impression due to the small number of pilots that typically comprise a squadron. The loss or gain of a single pilot can alter the figure by up to 14 per cent.
Furthermore, by providing separate figures for pilots and navigators, squadrons that did not register as being below 90 per cent. of a full complement in my previous response have sometimes done so in this one.
(2) Not applicable
19 Oct 2001 : Column: 1370W
AAvn is currently undergoing major structural change as it migrates from its old Anti-Tank (Atk) establishment to its new Attack and Utility Aviation establishments. These squadrons might have been shown at full compliment, but for the requirement to under implement personnel in the front line in order to provide the transitional posts required to fill Apache.
(3) Not applicable
(4) Shortages will continue until fleet out of service. Operational output is met by using navigators who normally undertake the training of junior aircrew
(5) 24 Squadron is first C-130J Squadron currently training initial crew and will be manned at 100 per cent. by mid 2002 as programmed
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library a text of the Master Information Exchange Memorandum on Non-Lethal Weapons Systems agreement and the annexe reference UK-RN-N-9757951 signed on 2 February 1998. 
Mr. Ingram: The Master Information Exchange Memorandum (MIEM) on Non-Lethal Weapons Systems is an agreement jointly owned with the US Department of Defence. The Ministry of Defence does not make such agreements between nations publicly available. I am therefore withholding disclosure of this information under exemption 1 of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information.
19 Oct 2001 : Column: 1371W
Mr. Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) Tornado GR1, (b) Tornado GR4 and (c) Tornado F3 in Oman for Saif Sareea II are (i) fully serviceable, (ii) undergoing first line maintenance, (iii) undergoing second line maintenance and (iv) undergoing third and fourth line maintenance; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Hoon [holding answer 18 October 2001]: The operational serviceability of frontline aircraft will vary from hour to hour. Overall, the Tornado fleet deployed on exercise Saif Sareea has performed fully in line with expectations, despite the testing environmental conditions.
As of 17 October, nine of the 12 Tornado GR4s and 11 of the 12 Tornado F3s were fully serviceable. One Tornado GR4a is awaiting return to the UK. The balance of the Tornado force is undergoing first line maintenance and is expected to return to full serviceability shortly.
Mr. Hoon [holding answer 18 October 2001]: There are 13 Tornado GR4 and 12 Tornado F3 aircraft in Oman for Exercise Saif Sareea II. These aircraft are making an important contribution to the exercise. No Tornado GR1 aircraft are deployed.
Mr. Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many missions have been flown by (a) Tornado GR1s, (b) Tornado GR4s and (c) Tornado F3s as part of Saif Sareea II to date; how many missions which have involved (i) Tornado GR1s, (ii) Tornado GR4s and (iii) Tornado F3s as part of Saif Sareea II have been (1) cancelled and (2) reduced due to (A) serviceability shortfalls and (B) technical malfunctions in the aircraft; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Hoon [holding answer 18 October 2001]: There are no Tornado GR1 aircraft deployed on Exercise Saif Sareea II. The Tornado GR4, GR4a and F3 aircraft deployed have, despite the very demanding environmental conditions, performed fully in line with expectations and have made a full and effective contribution to the exercise.
|Missions||Tornado GR4/4a||Tornado F3|
|Cancelled for serviceability||28||11|
|Cancelled for technical reasons||30||6|
|Reduced for serviceability||10||20|
|Reduced for technical reasons||4||19|
19 Oct 2001 : Column: 1372W
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what proposals he has to introduce attachment of earnings orders from the Child Support Agency to serving and other personnel employed by his Department. 
Mr. Ingram: Under child support legislation, the Child Support Agency is able to request that the Ministry of Defence (MOD) implement deductions from the pay of both service and civilian personnel to meet child support maintenance payments. In the case of service personnel these are known as Deductions of Earnings Requests. These are effectively the same as Attachment of Earnings Orders which the Child Support Agency uses to obtain payment from 'non-resident parents' within the population at large, including MOD civil servants.
From the introduction of the legislation in 1993 it has been the MOD's policy to comply with all such requests, other than in exceptional circumstances. The MOD maintains a Memorandum of Understanding with the Child Support Agency which details the administrative procedures to be followed by both Departments when contacting service personnel. A copy is held in the Library of the House.
Mr. Ingram: Cluster bombs are a legitimate weapon that provide a capability against certain targets which cannot be effectively achieved in other ways. We reserve the right to use the most suitable lawful weapon available in the proportionate manner required by international law.
Mr. Swayne: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many proposals for additional life cover under the PAX+ Scheme have been completed but are not now on risk as a consequence of AIG's decision to discontinue new cover as of 21 September. 
Mr. Ingram: The PAX Scheme (formerly known as PAX+) is facilitated by MOD and provides both personal accident and life cover for armed forces personnel. Life cover is available only to those who first take out PAX personal accident cover. PAX's underwritersAIG Europe (UK)closed PAX to new applicants from 21 September. However, details of the number of proposals for new or increased PAX life cover which were completed on or after this date, and, as a consequence, could not be taken on risk are not currently available.
19 Oct 2001 : Column: 1373W
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