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Mr. Spellar: The Gulf Veterans Medical Assessment Programme has been in existence since October 1993 and at the end of February of this year 3,105 veterans had been seen. A paper on the findings from the first 1,000 veterans was published in the British Medical Journal in January 1999. A paper on the second 1,000 veterans will shortly be published in the Journal of the Royal Army Medical Corps and a paper on the third 1,000 veterans, and the 3,000 in total, is almost ready for submission for publication in a peer-reviewed journal. A presentation based on this last paper was made by the head of the GVMAP at a recent conference on Gulf illnesses in the United States.
Psychiatric illnesses are predominant among the illnesses seen at the GVMAP, of which Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, with or without co-morbidity, is the most common. The GVMAP physicians have found a few other Gulf related illnesses, predominantly of a respiratory or dermatological nature. They have not found any evidence of a unique syndrome among Gulf veterans or any unusual pattern of disease among veterans who attended the programme. They have not seen any evidence of increased immunological, neurological or renal diseases, or the appearance of any unusual cancers. The symptoms presented by veterans who have attended the GVMAP are similar to those reported by members of the general population attending their GPs' surgeries.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what reports the Department has received or produced relating to neurological damage sustained by service personnel in the Gulf War; and if he will publish them. 
Mr. Spellar: The Ministry of Defence has not received any reports relating to neurological damage in Gulf veterans which have not been published in scientific journals or are otherwise publicly available. Nor has the Ministry of Defence produced any such reports.
The MOD is currently sponsoring research at King's College Medical School which is investigating neuro- muscular problems in Gulf veterans. The results of this research will be published in the peer-reviewed scientific literature in due course.
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on what date and for what reasons he decided to acknowledge the existence of the Force Reaction Unit; what the limits are on disclosure of information regarding the activities of this unit; and what instructions he has issued regarding the co-operation of former members of the FRU with the Stevens Inquiry. 
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The order was obtained in order to protect lives and national security. These papers confirmed that "R" was a former member of the FRU.
It would be inappropriate for the MOD to issue instructions to any former soldier who is to be questioned by the police on any issue. Nevertheless, the MOD is fully supportive of the Stevens Inquiry and will continue to provide it with whatever assistance it can.
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many service personnel in total have served with the armed forces in Northern Ireland since troops were deployed there in 1969; how many have been killed and injured in the course of their duties; how many are receiving war pensions as a result of injuries sustained in Northern Ireland; and how many widows are receiving pensions where bereavement is attributable to tours of duty in Northern Ireland. 
Mr. Spellar: Since August 1969, the total number of soldiers who have served at least one day in Northern Ireland is 310,831, while the total number of officers who have served at least one day in Northern Ireland is 28,282 1 . In the case of the Royal Air Force, 2,233 officers and 24,236 airmen/airwomen are recorded as having received pay while serving in Northern Ireland and will, therefore, have served at least one month in Province. Comparable information for the Royal Navy is not available.
The number of British service personnel injured in Northern Ireland since August 1969 is detailed in the table.
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(10) These figures include regular soldiers, full and part-time members of the Ulster Defence Regiment and the Royal Irish Regiment. They also include members of the TA, who do not play any part in security operations in Northern Ireland, but it is not possible to extract these figures from the overall totals.
(11) Figures are from August 1969-19 February 2001 and relate to terrorist activity. 434 deaths occurred while the individual was on duty.
(12) Figures are from 1 January 1974-19 February 2001 and include injuries/deaths from all causes.
(13) Figures are from August 1969-19 February 2001 and relate primarily to injuries which were incurred while on duty; however, the manner in which data have historically been compiled means some injuries incurred while off duty may also be included.
(14) Figures are from 1 January 1976-19 February 2001 and relate primarily to injuries which were incurred while on duty; however, the manner in which data have historically been compiled means some injuries incurred while off duty may also be included.
Information about the number of widows receiving pensions where bereavement is attributable to tours of duty in Northern Ireland is not readily available. Neither my Department nor the War Pensions Agency categorises these pensions according to the geographical area in which bereavement took place. This information could be obtained only by a manual search of all pension files, which could only be done at disproportionate cost.
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what further action has been taken against the three paratroopers alleged to have shot Fahri Bici and Avni Dudi in Kosovo; and what duties have been undertaken since April 2000 by (a) the 1st Battalion Parachute Regiment and (b) the three paratroopers against whom allegations have been made. 
Mr. Spellar: This issue is currently being considered by the Attorney-General, and any potential further action will be dependant on the outcome of his deliberations. The 1st Battalion Parachute Regiment has undertaken the following duties since 1 April 2000.
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|30 April 2000||A Company-Exercise Red Stripe in Jamaica|
|7-26 May 2000||Operation Palliser in Sierra Leone|
|31 July-4 August 2000||Arms plot move to Dover|
|2-20 September 2000||A Company-Operation Barras Sierra Leone|
|October-December 2000||Northern Ireland Training|
|December 2000||Rural Roulement Bn (Northern Ireland)-two Companies are in Northern Ireland|
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(DU) during the Gulf conflict. The Ministry of Defence's assessment is that UK tanks used fewer than one hundred 120mm rounds against Iraq's military forces during hostilities (this equates to less than one metric tonne of DU). Additional rounds were fired by UK forces during earlier work-up training to establish the round's Mean Point of Impact. In a paper published in December 2000, the US Government reported that US forces in the Gulf had fired ammunition rounds containing some 290 metric tonnes of DU.
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Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what discussions have taken place between (a) Government officials and (b) Ministers and British companies about the latter's participation in National Missile Defence projects. 
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