Skip to main content

Armed Forces: Deployment

Volume 502: debated on Monday 14 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what treaty obligations the UK has to provide military forces overseas. (304451)

I have been asked to reply.

There are over 400 treaties concluded since 1945 of possible relevance to the hon. Member’s question. Of these, there are four multilateral treaties which stand out in terms of their importance: the North Atlantic treaty 1949; the treaty on the European Union as amended by the Lisbon Treaty 2007; the treaty of economic, social and cultural collaboration and collective self-defence 1948 as amended by the Paris Agreements of 23 October 1954 on the Western European Union; and the Charter of the United Nations 1945. Before the UK were to provide military forces overseas by virtue of relevant provisions in any of these treaties, it would be necessary for a separate decision to be taken by the Government to commit UK armed forces for deployment abroad.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what percentage of personnel in each (a) service and (b) corps of the Army are in breach of their harmony guidelines on (i) tour intervals and (ii) individual separated service. (305020)

Each service operates different harmony guidelines. Royal Navy personnel should not exceed 660 days deployed in 36 months, the Army 415 days in 30 months, and the RAF 280 days detached in 24 months. Against these criteria our most recent information is that <l per cent. of the Royal Navy, 10.3 per cent. of the Army and 5 per cent. of RAF personnel are operating above harmony guidelines.

The information on tour intervals and corps of the Army is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.