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Visiting Forces (Claims Procedure)

Volume 526: debated on Thursday 15 April 1954

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asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Defence the arrangements contemplated for the settlement of claims in respect of the tortious acts of members of visiting forces when the Visiting Forces Act, 1952, comes into operation.

My right hon. and learned Friend the Home Secretary has informed the House that it is the intention of the Government to bring the Act into force and to ratify the N.A.T.O. Status of Forces Agreement, 1951 (Cmd. 8279), in the near future. When this has been done, arrangements which have been made for the settlement of these claims (most of which are likely to arise from traffic accidents involving Service vehicles), will come into effect and my noble Friend will issue in due course (as the Act directs) a statement showing the nature and operation of these arrangements for the information of persons who may be concerned with them.I circulate below a draft of this statement; the date to be inserted in paragraph 3 will be the date when the N.A.T.O. Status of Forces Agreement enters into force for the United Kingdom.