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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what is his Department's latest assessment of the capability of the Soviet Union to safely destroy its stockpile of chemical weapons.
Mr. Archie Hamilton
We assess that the Soviet Union does not at present possess a capability for the large-scale safe destruction of chemical weapons. A draft Soviet state programme for CW destruction has recently been completed, apparently containing a number of alternative options for handling the destruction problem. A decision on the programme is awaited from the Supreme Soviet.