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15 Oct 2002 : Column 548Wcontinued
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what arrangements he has made for an investigation into the circumstances of the deaths of Corporal John Gregory and Sergeant Robert Busuttil. 
Dr. Moonie: An investigation into the deaths of Corporal John Gregory and Sergeant Robert Busuttil was instigated immediately after the incident. Initial reports were compiled by the Kabul Detachment of the Royal Military Police and the 32nd Section of the Royal Military Police (United Kingdom) Special Investigation Branch. The investigation is not yet complete and remains ongoing at this time.
As I stated in my answer of 22 July 2002, Official Report, column 759W, to the hon. Member for North Wiltshire (Mr. Gray) HMS Nottingham deployed for duties associated with the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) including Exercise STARDEX. She was subsequently assigned to Coalition Maritime Operations in the Middle East, and was being held at notice for this purpose while deployed to the Asia Pacific region. HMS York has been nominated as the ship held at readiness in support of the fight against terrorism.
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|Financial Year||Amount #M|
1. The final figure for 20012002 is not yet available.
2. Figures given are gross payments and do not take account of the credits due to the UK under the 1998 MOU to reduce the overall missile buy in accordance with SDR. These affect 20002001 onwards.
3. The costs cover only production costs as the UK paid no development costs for the missiles.
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Richmond Park (Dr Tonge) of 8 July, Official Report, column 714W, on nuclear missile defence, whether the collaborative research and information exchange will involve nuclear-based technology. 
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the total cost of deploying British personnel in the United States as a result of (a) the United Kingdom purchase of nuclear weapons from the United States, (b) the United Kingdom testing of nuclear weapons in the United States and (c) other logistical requirements, including C3 expertise, of procuring nuclear weapons from the United States has been since 1972. 
Mr. Ingram: The United Kingdom does not purchase nuclear weapons from the United States. Article 1 of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons forbids all nuclear weapon states from supplying nuclear weapons to any other state.
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence under which budget headings the projected expenditure on (a) the Trident programme, (b) Nuclear Warhead Stability Review, (c) nuclear waste disposal, (d) nuclear site security and (e) remediation of radioactively contaminated land and buildings on
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defence nuclear sites, as listed in tables 1 to 6 of CM 5412, Ministry of Defence Expenditure Plans 200204, published on 9 July, will be placed. 
Mr. Ingram: Projected expenditure on items (a)(e) falls under ''Provision of Defence Capability'' for the Ministry of Defence Resource Budget (of which part is counted against the MOD's Departmental Expenditure Limit and part against non-cash items in Annually Managed Expenditure). Projected expenditure on items (a), (c), (d) and (e) also falls under ''Provision of Defence Capability'' for the MOD Capital Budget.
The majority of this projected expenditure (both Resource and Capital) falls within three of our Top Level Budgets; Commander-in-Chief Fleet, Chief of Defence Logistics and Defence Procurement Agency. However additional projected Resource expenditure also falls within Land Command, RAF Strike Command and the Central Top Level Budget for item (d).
Challenger 2 was deployed on Exercise Saif Sareea II, held in Oman last year, where it was operated in extremely hot, dry, desert conditions. Post-exercise reports confirm that the tank performed very well during the Exercise, notwithstanding the higher than anticipated usage of engine air filters. Trials of possible enhancements to reduce the effects of high concentrations of dust on the tank are currently taking place.
Mr. Wray: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent progress has been made to address the problems with (a) the Challenger 2, (b) AS90 and (c) suitability of personal equipment highlighted by the Saif Sareea II exercise. 
Personnel working on Exercise Saif Sareea II preparations over the summer months were issued with desert combat boots. It was considered that regular combat boots would be appropriate, given the expected temperatures, for the main exercise phase during the autumn. Temperatures were, however, significantly higher and a useful lesson learnt has been that for future deployments, in such temperatures, it would be appropriate for all troops to be issued with desert combat boots.
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Both desert and temperate camouflaged uniforms were approved for use on Exercise Saif Sareea II. Following experience in Oman and Afghanistan, we intend to determine the optimum upper temperature range for the temperate uniform.
Mr. Ingram: The SA80 modification programme has significantly improved the reliability and performance of the weapon. Extensive trials were carried out in severe climatic conditions including the desert, the arctic and the jungle; these trials confirmed the newly modified weapon's superior capabilities. More recent trials and demonstrations in Afghanistan and Oman have established beyond doubt that the weapon is highly accurate, reliable, and that it can be effectively maintained in an operational environment.
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Mr. Wray: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he plans a further exercise on the scale of Saif Sareea II; and what recent exercises have taken place in different (a) geographical and (b) environmental conditions. 
Mr. Ingram: We aim to hold periodic exercises on the scale of Saif Sareea II but planning for the next one is still at a very early stage. Exercises at all levels frequently take place in different geographical and environmental conditions to prepare our armed forces for the many different challenges they may face, some long planned and some at short notice. A list of the most recent exercises could only be provided at disproportionate cost. Information is only held centrally on major exercises listed in the Ministry of Defence's Defence Exercise Programme (DXP) which covers some 350 exercises each year. Examples from the DXP of recent exercises in different geographical and environmental conditions include:
|PANTHER CUB||Feb 02||Belize||Land Command jungle warfare training|
|STRONG RESOLVE||Mar 02||Norway/Poland||Tri-Service participation in quadrennial NATO LIVEX|
|RED FLAG||Mar 02||USA||HQ Strike Command air exercise in USA|
|GRAND PRIX||Mar 02||Kenya||Land Command battlegroup exercise|
|JOINT VENTURE||May 02||UK||PJHQ tri-Service Component Commander Command Post Exercise|
|STARDEX 02||Jul 02||Malaysia||FLEET exercise within Five Power Defence Agreement|
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