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Diego Garcia: USA

Volume 464: debated on Wednesday 17 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to his answer of 19 March 2007, Official Report, column 604W, on Diego Garcia: USA, if he will list the occasions in each year from 1979 to date when the US has sought approval for operations they wished to undertake from the island. (155373)

[holding answer 17 September 2007]: The 1966 UK/US Exchange of Notes requires the US to seek prior approval at the highest political level for any offensive action by the US from their base at Diego Garcia. It is a matter of record that the UK approved US offensive action from Diego Garcia in support of operations in Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003. However, I am withholding a full list of the occasions when the US has sought such approval as the release of such information would, or would be likely to, prejudice our international relations.