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Military Personnel

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many military personnel have died in Northern Ireland in each of the last five years. [67079]

Mr. Ingram: During the five-year period 2001-05, 34 service personnel died in Northern Ireland who were members of the regular UK armed forces or full-time members of the Home Service Battalions of the Royal Irish Regiment. Details on annual deaths incurred are listed in the following table.

All deaths Regular UK armed forces Home service( 1) battalions of the Royal Irish regiment

























(1) Full-time members only.

Military Spending

Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much was spent on the (a) Army, (b) Royal Air Force and (c) Royal Navy in (i) cash and (ii) real terms in each year since 1997. [71202]

Mr. Ingram: Defence spending is not split by Service. Instead, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) operates a system of delegated authority to Top Level Budget (TLB) holders. Some are single Service but several, for example, the Defence Procurement Agency, the Defence Logistics Organisation and the Chief of Joint Operations support all three Services and their budgets are not broken down by Service.

Information on spending by TLBs can be found in the Government's Expenditure Plans (GEP) 2005-06 to 2007-08 MOD (Cmd6532) a copy of which is available in the Library of the House. This sets out past expenditure and future spending plans. It provides breakdowns of consumption by activity area. This includes the single Service Top Level Budget holders, and in the case of the RAF this shows the Commander-in-Chief Strike and
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the Commander-in-Chief Personnel and Training Command. More recently, the MOD has published the 2004-05 Annual Report and Accounts, which provides the same breakdown. Figures for 2005-06 will be published in our Annual Report and Accounts, which is planned for publication before the summer recess.

Nuclear Weapons Testing

Mr. Maude: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what comparative assessment he has made of the National Radiological Protection Board research papers of 1988 and 1993 on the incidence of cancer among men from the UK who participated in the nuclear weapon test programmes. [71446]

Mr. Watson: Assessment of the 1988 report, which examined cancer incidence up to the end of 1983, led to the conclusion that presence at the UK atmospheric nuclear test sites had increased the risk of multiple myeloma and leukaemia (other than chronic lymphatic leukaemia) compared with controls selected from members of the armed forces who had not been present at the tests. This was because the level of these cancers among the control group was lower than would be expected for the general population rather than because it was higher for those who took part in the tests. These findings did not correlate with the risk of exposure from ionising radiation; rather, levels in the controls were inexplicably low. The 1993 analysis extended follow up to the end of 1990. Rates of multiple myeloma and the relevant leukaemias in the additional follow-up years were slightly lower in test participants compared with controls, whose rates were as in the general population. Because the differential increase in incidence of the relevant leukaemias mirrors the likely pattern of radiation-induced leukaemias, it was accepted that a possible slight risk of lymphatic leukaemia (other than chronic leukaemia) in the first 25 years after participation could not be ruled out. The small hazard of multiple myeloma in the 1988 report was not found in 1993 and was considered a chance finding. Both the 1988 and 1993 studies found that presence at the sites had no detectable effect on the risk of developing any other malignancy. A further study, published in 2003, also confirmed these findings.

Paveway IV Missile

Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when the Paveway IV missile will enter service; and which aircraft will be able to use it. [70275]

Mr. Ingram: Paveway IV was selected as the solution to the requirement (SR(A) 1248) for an all-weather precision guided bombing capability and will enter service on Harrier GR9/9A in mid 2007. The intention is that Paveway IV will also be integrated onto Tornado GR4/4A and Typhoon aircraft.

Regimental Mascots

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 7 May 2006, to question 50244, on regimental mascots, when he will reply to the hon. Member for Pendle on the matter. [70337]

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Mr. Ingram: I replied to my hon. Friend on 15 May 2006.

Service Personnel (Commendation)

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what means of recognition are available for the commendation of those serving in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan; and what means of recognition is available for those (i) injured and (ii) killed in the line of duty in those operations. [70823]

Mr. Watson: The full range of gallantry and meritorious service awards is available for those serving on operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere and may be awarded to those injured or killed while on operations. The only exception is that Orders cannot be conferred posthumously, for example a serviceman killed on operations cannot be appointed to the Order of the British Empire.

Service in Iraq and Afghanistan is also specifically recognised by the award of the Iraq Medal and the Operational Service Medal “Afghanistan” respectively. Should qualifying service be brought to an end before the completion of the specified qualifying period on account of death, wounding or other disability due to operational service, the reduced period shall be sufficient qualification for the award of the medal.

The Government-supported Armed Forces Memorial, which is to be the national memorial dedicated to members of the UK armed forces killed on duty or by terrorist action since the Second World War, will be constructed at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire and will record the names of almost 16,000 men and women. The trustees hope that construction will commence this summer and plan to unveil the Armed Forces Memorial in October 2007.

Rolls of Honour similar to those kept by the Royal Air Force in the Church of St. Clement Danes in London, which record the names of those who have died while serving in the UK armed forces, will be created for the Royal Navy and for the Army and will be kept in the Church of St. Martin-in-the-Fields and the Royal Hospital Chelsea respectively. A memorial, without names, in Westminster Abbey dedicated to members of the armed forces killed in conflict is also planned.

Tornado Fleet

Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how long the (a) Tornado GR and (b) Tornado F3 will remain in service. [70271]

Mr. Ingram: On current plans, the Tornado GR4 will continue to be operated by the RAF until well into the 2020s, and the Tornado F3 will be retired from service around the end of this decade.

Type 45 Destroyers

Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer of 10 May 2006, Question 67918, on Type 45 Destroyers, what assessment the naval staff has made of whether (a) an amphibious task group and (b) a carrier task group can be defended by fewer than two such destroyers. [71178]

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Mr. Ingram: As I stated in my answer of 10 May 2006, Official Report, column 290W, it is the capability provided by the ships, rather than their numbers, that determine the level of protection provided.

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