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Volume 471: debated on Monday 28 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what recent estimate he has made of the number of weapons held by each (a) Republican and (b) Loyalist paramilitary organisation in Northern Ireland; and if he will make a statement. (182456)

As any estimate about the number of illegally-held weapons in Northern Ireland would be based on intelligence, it would be inappropriate to publish this information.

Decommissioning has been a key measure for securing the trust and confidence necessary to achieve political stability in Northern Ireland. There needs to be engagement with the IICD by all paramilitary organisations, and that must be backed up by action.