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Colombia: Armed Forces

Volume 486: debated on Tuesday 13 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to the answer of 25 November 2008, Official Report, column 1196W, on Colombia: armed forces, whether the figure quoted for the number of Colombian armed forces personnel who received training from the British Army in 2007-08 includes those who received training in the field of counter-narcotics. (242760)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what expenditure his Department has incurred on providing training to members of the Colombian armed forces in each year since 2000. (242765)

UK bilateral training and engagement on human rights and humanitarian demining, which is largely funded by the joint Foreign and Commonwealth Office/Department for International Development/Ministry of Defence conflict prevention pool, has cost the following approximate amounts:

£

2000-01

13,500

2001-02

149,000

2002-03

134,000

2003-04

120,000

2004-05

120,000

2005-06

130,000

2006-07

190,000

2007-08

190,000

2008-09

2190,000

1 Denotes information that is incomplete.

2 Denotes estimated spend.

As well as bilateral projects, the UK supports projects running through several UN agencies including the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, and the UN Office of Drugs and Crime, that will provide training to more than 2000 serving men and women.

These figures do not include training given in the field of counter narcotics. We do not disclose details of this engagement, as to do so would endanger the security of the UK and Colombian personnel involved, and undermine the effectiveness of that work.