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Abm Treaty

Volume 569: debated on Wednesday 14 February 1996

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asked Her Majesty's Government:Whether they have noted the intention of the United States Administration to "evolve", "update", "clarify" and "push" the ABM treaty, and obtain "at least the option of a national missile defence deployment that is consistent with the threat that we face from regional outlaw states" as set out in a speech by Mr. Robert Bell, Special Assistant for National Security Affairs to the President of the United States on 9 October 1995, and whether they share these intentions.

We arc in regular contact with the United States on all matters relating to strategic security. But it is for the parties to the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty to agree on its operation.

asked Her Majesty's Government:Whether they have noted Mr. Robert Bell's statement that "the foreign audience that has got to be taken into account [is] Moscow" and whether they are content no longer to be consulted on these issues, given that Prime Minister Thatcher was consulted.

The context of the reference makes clear that it is for the United States and Russia, as parties to the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, to consult on the interpretation and operation of the treaty. Her Majesty's Government is in regular contact with the United States on all issues relating to strategic security.