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Afghanistan: Helmand Province

Volume 685: debated on Monday 9 October 2006

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How many aircraft are currently deployed in the Helmand province of Afghanistan; what are the aircraft types; and what are the flying hours for each type.[HL7327]

I am withholding details of where our aircraft are based and what their flying hours are as this information could severely compromise operational security and put the lives of our personnel at risk. The most appropriate type of aircraft is based at the most appropriate place to support the UK deployment to Helmand.

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How the overall deficit in helicopter lift in the Helmand province of Afghanistan is calculated; and what is the current overall deficit.[HL7328]

The requirements for all military resources in Afghanistan are considered by the Ministry of Defence, either as part of the formal force level review process, or as a result of receiving requests from theatre commanders.

Where a deficit is foreseen, requests for additional resources are (and have been) staffed from the operational theatre to the Permanent Joint Headquarters and then to the Ministry of Defence. Each of the recent requests from the operational theatre have been endorsed and additional resources have been allocated, as announced by the Secretary of State for Defence on 10 July. Since then, no further requests have been received from Commander UK Task Force for additional helicopters.