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Armed Forces: Deployment

Volume 482: debated on Wednesday 12 November 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) regular and (b) Territorial Army (i) officers and (ii) personnel of other ranks have been mobilised for service overseas within six months of completing their basic training in each year since 2003. (227876)

Officials are collating the information requested. 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 Bob Ainsworth to Liam Fox:

I undertook to write to you in answer to your Parliamentary Question on 20 October 2008, (Official Report, column 121W) about Regular and Territorial Army personnel who have been mobilised overseas (ie deployed on operations) within six months of completing their basic training.

Our investigations have established that this information cannot be provided for the period prior to the introduction of the Joint Personnel Administration (JPA) system for the Army in March 2007 without incurring disproportionate cost, as it would require the interrogation of thousands of individual service files. The figures for the period since the introduction of JPA are being validated by DASA (Defence Analytical Services Agency) after which it should be possible to provide a fuller answer. This validation will, however, take some months to complete.

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