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Arms Reductions

Volume 124: debated on Wednesday 16 December 1987

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the Government's policy towards Soviet proposals for conventional arms reductions in Europe.

The Soviet Union has formulated no specific proposals on conventional arms reductions in Europe at the conventional stability mandate discussions in Vienna beyond general assertions of its willingness to talk seriously about conventional arms control and its readiness to contemplate the elimination of disparities "where they exist". At the MBFR talks, also in Vienna, it has shown itself interested only in unverifiable symbolic or declaratory measures which would do nothing to enhance stability and security. In the so-called Budapest Appeal of June 1986 the Warsaw pact proposed equal percentage cuts by both NATO and Warsaw pact which would do nothing to redress existing imbalances.