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Western Europe (Nuclear Warheads)

Volume 979: debated on Monday 25 February 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence when the United States of America offer to withdraw 1,000 nuclear warheads from Western Europe was made; what conditions were attached to this offer; and what reply has been received from the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

At the joint meeting of NATO Foreign and Defence Ministers on 12 December Alliance Ministers supported a United States offer to negotiate with the Soviet Union on the limitation of United States and Soviet land-based long-range theatre nuclear forces. This offer was formally made by the United States shortly thereafter, but was rejected by the Soviet Union on 3 January. The Ministers concerned also endorsed an un conditional decision by the United States to withdraw 1,000 nuclear warheads from its stockpile in Europe. Despite the Russian rejection of the arms control offer this withdrawal will still be implemented.