Skip to main content

Sierra Leone and the Balkans: Peacekeeping Operations

Volume 470: debated on Thursday 10 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence with reference to the answer of 11 June 2007, on Sierra Leone: peacekeeping operations, what progress has been made on reconciling casualty data for operations in (a) Sierra Leone and (b) the Balkans since May 2007. (162225)

Work on reconciling casualty data for operations in Sierra Leone and the Balkans is continuing. I will write to the hon. Member when the work is complete and place a copy of my letter in the Library of the House.

Substantive answer from Derek Twigg to Liam Fox:

I undertook to write to you in answer to your Parliamentary Question on 19 November 2007 (Official Report, Column 486W) about the progress made on reconciling casualty data for operations in Sierra Leone and the Balkans since May 1997. I trust you will also accept this letter as a reply to your letter of 13 December on the same subject.

I can now confirm the current position in respect of both the Sierra Leone and Balkans casualties is as follows:

Fatalities

As at 10 June 2006, a total of 72 British Forces personnel had died while serving in the Balkans since the start of operations in 1992. This information can be found at:

http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FactSheets/OperationsFactsheets/BalkansBritishFatalities.

During the operations in Sierra Leone between 2000 and 2002, five UK Armed Forces personnel died whilst deployed: one was killed in action, three died in operational accidents and one died of natural causes. This information is not available via the public websites.

Non-fatal casualties

I can also confirm that the notifiable casualty (NOTICAS) data on Very Seriously Injured (VSI) and Seriously Injured (SI) for Operations in the Balkans and Sierra Leone since January 2001 have now been verified and validated.

Between January 2001 and April 2007, there were four VSI and 13 SI casualties in the Balkans. This data is published on the MOD Website at:

http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/AboutDefence/CorporatePublications/DoctrineOperationsandDiplomacyPublications/OperationsinTheBalkans/TheBalkanCasualtyTable.htm

Between 1 January 2001 and 30 July 2002, there were no VSI or SI casualties on operation in Sierra Leone.

Non-fatal casualty data prior to 2001 have not been examined and could only be captured centrally and verified at disproportionate cost.

I am placing a copy of my letter in the Library of the House.