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Mr. Paterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether his Department has carried out an evaluation of deploying (a) the Huger 500 and (b) other light utility helicopters as convoy or patrol escorts in Iraq; and what assessment he has made of the merits of the use of machines of this type in such a manner to enhance force protection for British troops in convoy or patrol in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan. 
Mr. Ingram: British forces in Iraq and Afghanistan have Lynx light utility helicopters which can be used for escort duties if commanders judge that appropriate. The threat to our troops deployed on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan is kept under constant review and our force posture, including the use of helicopters in force protection roles, is adjusted accordingly.
Mr. Keetch: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) how many armed forces personnel in (a) the Army, (b) the Royal Air Force and (c) the Royal Navy were medically discharged from the armed services in Iraq owing to (i) an accident, (ii) limb amputation and (iii) psychological problems in each year since March 2003; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) how many armed forces personnel in (a) the Army, (b) the Royal Air Force and (c) the Royal Navy have been medically discharged from the armed services
in Afghanistan owing to (i) an accident, (ii) limb amputation and (iii) psychological problems in each year since October 2001; and if he will make a statement. 
Des Browne: Details of armed forces personnel who have been discharged as a result of a condition that can be attributed specifically to service in Iraq or Afghanistan could be obtained only by a search of the individual medical records of all personnel discharged from the armed forces since October 2001, which could be done only at disproportionate cost.
In recent years, some 1,500 to 1,700 people have been medically discharged annually from the armed forces for any reason. Even when it is not possible to return an individual to full operational fitness following an injury or illness, it will often be possible to retain them in service in a different role, and it is our policy to do this whenever practical.
Mr. Ingram: As the then Secretary of State for Defence set out on 13 March, the total number of UK armed forces personnel serving in Iraq since the last transfer of authority took place on 30 April is now in the region of 7,200. Currently up to 2,800 further service personnel are stationed outside Iraq in support of Operation Telic.
Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many high mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicles (Humvees) are (a) owned and (b) leased by the Department; and whether any such vehicles have been acquired under the Stormer Programme. 
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 29 June 2006, Official Report, column 15WS, on the support vehicle programme, for what reasons MAN ERF UK Ltd was selected as the provider of support vehicles; what process was followed to select the provider; and which other companies bid for the contract. 
MAN ERF UK Ltd was selected to supply the extra 2,077 support vehicles through an option in the existing support vehicle contract. This contract was let on a competitive basis and four companies submitted bids: MAN ERF UK Ltd, Mercedes-Benz UK Defence, the Oshkosh Truck Corporation and Stewart and Stevenson TVS UK. Following a detailed assessment it was concluded that MAN ERF UK Ltd offered the best value for money
and it was selected as preferred bidder in October 2004. A detailed negotiation phase was then undertaken before MAN ERF UK Ltd was awarded the contract on 31 March 2005.
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the (a) range and (b) circular area probability are of the (i) Trident missile system, (ii) Polaris Chevaline missile system and (iii) Polaris missile system. 
I am withholding the information on circular error probable, which indicates the accuracy of the missile, as this could enable deductions to be made that could be prejudicial to national security and international relations.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what discussions he has had with (a) the Treasury and (b) the Cabinet Office regarding the pre-comprehensive spending review report; and if he will make a statement. 
Des Browne: I have and will continue to have wide ranging and regular discussions with my right hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury about preparations for the 2007 comprehensive spending review, as a matter of key importance to the Ministry of Defence's medium and long-term planning.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the releases issued to the media by his Department between 17 July 2003 and 20 July 2003; and at what (a) time and (b) date each was (i) drafted, (ii) cleared for release and (iii) released under embargo to the media. 
Des Browne [holding answer 10 July 2006]: On 19 July 2003, my right hon. Friend, the Member for Ashfield (Mr. Hoon) the then Secretary of State for Defence, released a statement to the media, which explained that the Government had invited Lord Hutton urgently to conduct an investigation of the circumstances surrounding the death of Dr. Kelly. According to our records, this statement was released to the media at 3.20 pm on 19 July 2003.
The Ministry of Defence does not hold records of precisely when statements to the media are drafted or cleared for release to the media. It is normal practice that press notices are issued to the media shortly after clearance for release is given.
Two other press releases were issued by the Ministry of Defence between 17 July 2003 and 20 July 2003. The way ahead for Multi Role Armoured Vehicles and Future Command and Liaison Vehicles was released to the media at 12.48 pm on 17 July 2003. The launch of the UK Missile Defence Centre was released to the media at 4.42 pm on 18 July 2003.
Peter Viggers: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many service personnel on overseas service have experienced delays in the payment of school fees made in respect of members of their families in each of the last five years; and what steps are taken to minimise such delays. 
Mr. Watson: There have been 14 late Continuity of Education Allowance (CEA) (formerly Boarding School Allowance) payments out of 115,000 applications over the last five years. Broken down by year, the CEA late payments are in the following table.
It is not known which, if any, of these 14 late payments were in respect of personnel serving overseas. Details of how many of the affected service personnel were overseas are not held centrally and even if the source documents still existed, the breakdown could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
All three services issue reminders each term of when the deadline is for submitting applications and unit administrative staff also have a responsibility to remind likely applicants personally of the cut-off dates.
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what receipts his Department received for spectrum released for civil use in financial years 1997-98 to 2005-06; and what proportion was appropriated in aid. 
Mr. Ingram: The Ministry of Defence received no direct receipts for spectrum released for civil use in financial years 1997-98 to 2005-06. Where the Department has released spectrum for civil use, Ofcom does not levy a fee to the Department for this released spectrum.
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library copies of the information that his Department has released to Ofcom about its prospective spectrum utilisation. 
The Ministry of Defence provided information to Ofcom about its prospective spectrum utilisation in spectrum bands between 137MHz and 17.7GHz in support of the independent audit of public sector spectrum holdings undertaken by Professor Martin Cave for the Chancellor of the Exchequer. A
redacted version of the information is publicly available in the independent audit of Spectrum Holdings (December 2005)Annex B refers. The report, published by HSMO, can also be accessed on the internet at: www.spectrumaudit.org.uk.
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what studies are being carried out into whether to reuse or replace the Trident warhead pit; and when a decision on pit reuse or replacement is likely to be made. 
Des Browne: The Atomic Weapons Establishment undertakes a range of studies as part of a warhead assurance programme designed to ensure the safety, effectiveness and durability of the UK nuclear warhead stockpile. This process is designed to enable regular assessments of the service life of any particular pit, and ensure that essential capability continues to be maintained at all times.
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department has allocated for US contract N00178-04-D-4042 to EG and G, a Trident software support contract for K Development at the Naval Surface Warfare Centre Dahlgren, for the development and testing of (a) UK targeting, (b) reference and simulation models and (c) verifying the removal of US-eyes only items from Trident targeting and fire control software. 
The Ministry of Defence does not allocate funding for individual US Government contracts. Arrangements for support of the UK Fire Control Software and related matters are agreed
between the US and UK Governments under the Polaris Sales Agreement (as amended for Trident).
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 5 June 2006, Official Report, column 35W, on Trident, whether he makes a distinction between designing and developing in the context of work on a new warhead for use in Trident missiles. 
Des Browne: We do not draw a distinction between designing and developing in the context of nuclear warheads. As we said in the 1998 Strategic Defence Review (supporting essay 5 paragraph 14), we maintain a minimum capability at the Atomic Weapons Establishment to design and produce a replacement for the current Trident warhead, should that prove necessary.
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what the (a) actual and (b) establishment figures are for each regiment of the (i) Royal Household Cavalry, (ii) Royal Armoured Corps and (iii) Royal Artillery; 
(2) what the (a) actual and (b) establishment figures are for each (i) regiment and (ii) battalion of the (A) Royal Engineers, (B) Royal Corps of Signals, (C) Royal Logistics Corps, (D) Royal Army Medical Corps and (E) Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. 
Mr. Ingram: Strengths and establishment figures for these Arm/Services, broken down by regiment/battalion, are not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. I am able to provide the strengths and liability for these Arm/Services as at 1 May 2006:
|Full-time trained strength as at 1 May 2006 and liability|
|Full-time trained strength (including full-time reserve service (FTRS( 1) )||Liability( 2)||Strength( 3)||Strength as percentage of liability|
|(1) FTRS figures include full, limited and home commitment.|
(2) Based on Regular Army Liability (RAL 06). This liability is the Army target strength to be achieved by 1 April 2008, following the commencement of Northern Ireland Normalisation (NIN) and the implementation of the Future Army Structure (FAS).
(3 )As at 1 May 06
1. Figures exclude Home Service battalions of the Royal Irish Regiment, mobilised reserves, Territorial Army and other reserves.
2. Figures are rounded to the nearest 10.
Uniforms are generally issued through the unit Quartermaster stores. Any ill-fitting pieces of uniform can be exchanged there and then for a better fit. In cases where the individual falls outside of the standard size range, they receive made to measure uniforms. Exceptionally, where an item of uniform is
found to have been badly made, the Defence Clothing Integrated Project Team (DCIPT) examines the specification, identifies the problem and ensures that corrective action is taken.
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