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Durham Prison (Use Of Armed Picquet)

Volume 721: debated on Thursday 25 November 1965

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60.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why he has decided to use armed troops at Durham gaol; and if he will make a statement.

61.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what orders have been given to the soldiers guarding Durham Prison; and whether they are ordered to shoot to kill in the event of an attempted escape.

As the House will be aware, following a review of security risks concerning the special wing recently brought into use at Durham Prison, and after consultation with the Chief Constable of Durham, I have arranged with my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence, for the Army to provide an armed picquet within the prison. I am satisfied that, for the time being, this is a necessary precaution against the possibility of an armed raid. The picquet's instructions are to use such force only as may be necessary. It would not be in the public interest to give further details.