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Volume 456: debated on Thursday 1 February 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library a copy of the Memorandum of Understanding on the logistical support to the Estonian company participating in the International Security Assistance Force mission within the British Task Force. (108423)

After consultation with the Estonian Government regarding the release of these documents, I am releasing the main text of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). I will place a copy in the Library of the House.

The annex of the MoU has, however, been withheld because release of this information is liable to prejudice relations between the UK and another state.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the rules of engagement in Afghanistan are for retaliation by the armed forces against mortar and rocket attack. (111304)

Rules of Engagement detail the levels of permissiveness for the application of force in all environments across a wide range of activities in which our forces may be employed. Profiles do not constrain the inherent right of self-defence, and neither do they provide detailed tactical instructions to commanders.

Our Rules of Engagement entitle our forces to take reasonable and necessary action in self-defence in response to mortar and rocket attack. The commander in situ would use his military judgment to determine what would be the most appropriate means to counter the attack at the time.

In order to safeguard the security of our armed forces on operations, it is MOD policy not to comment on specific operational profiles or the rules therein.