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Volume 892: debated on Tuesday 13 May 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence how many British Forces and ancillary personnel are at present in Malaysia.

There are about 130 members of the British Forces and ancillary personnel in Malaysia at present, of whom some 80 are on training courses.

In view of the increasing troubles in Northern Malaysia, which could flow over into Thailand, and of the importance of the British not getting mixed up in them, will my hon. Friend give an absolute guarantee that no members of the Special Air Services Regiment are engaged in activities in either of those two countries?

I share my hon. Friend's very proper concern that we should not get involved in operations of this kind which are the responsibility of the Malaysian authorities. I think he will find that those we have in Malaysia at the moment are comparable to the sort of training teams we have elsewhere in the world.

In the event of the Malaysian Government requesting our help, would it be forthcoming?