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Cyprus (Visit)

Volume 115: debated on Wednesday 29 April 1987

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will report on his recent visit to military bases in Cyprus.

On 22–23 April I paid a short routine visit to British forces and installations in Cyprus. The visit had been planned for some time as a follow-up to my previous visit to Cyprus in February. In speaking to senior officers and indeed to service men of all ranks, I found that, despite the additional commitments imposed by the requirements of security following the terrorist attack in Akrotiri last August and more recently the shooting attack on 20 April, morale remains high. The troops are still able to take advantage of the adventurous training and sporting opportunities in Cyprus.While in Cyprus I was able to visit the two casualties of last week's shooting. The driver has now been discharged from hospital and the condition of his passenger, the daughter of another British service man, is much improved. I take this opportunity to commend once again the courage and quick thinking of the driver, Corporal Bailey, whose evasive action almost certainly prevented fatalities. I also wish to express my appreciation for the skill of the Cypriot police in making two early arrests in connection with this incident. We will continue to provide them with every assistance in their investigation.