My right honourable friend the Minister of State for the Armed Forces (Bob Ainsworth) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.
With the expiry of the call-out order made last January, I am reporting that a new order was made under Section 54 of the Reserve Forces Act 1996 so that reservists may continue to be called out into service to support operations in Iraq. The new order is valid for 12 months.
Some 310 reservists are currently mobilised and deployed in support of operations in Iraq compared with 270 for the same period last year and 640 in December 2006. With the forthcoming drawdown in Iraq, the overall number of reservists deployed to theatre is expected to reduce during the course of this year but nevertheless there is a continued need to call out reservists, particularly to assist with the logistics and service support elements of the operation both in the UK and overseas.