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Dr. Moonie: It remains our policy that all warships for the Royal Navy will continue to be built in the United Kingdom. The major programme of new naval procurement that is currently in progress will create or secure several thousand jobs in the United Kingdom shipyards and their ancillary industries throughout the country.
Dr. Moonie: The Ministry of Defence is undertaking the largest programme of warship building in this country for decades. In the last two years, 15 new warships have been ordered for service with the Royal Navy, comprising six type 45 destroyers, four Alternative Landing Ships Logistic, two survey vessels and three offshore patrol vessels.
It remains our policy that all warships for the Royal Navy will continue to be built in the United Kingdom. This major programme of shipbuilding will create or secure several thousand jobs in UK shipyards and their ancillary industries throughout the country.
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Dr. Moonie: As I answered on 17 June, the Shoeburyness ranges are included in the arrangements being negotiated with QinetiQ for the delivery of a long-term test and evaluation capability to the Ministry of Defence.
Dr. Moonie: The Ministry of Defence considers achieving value for taxpayers' money, as well as security of supply, to be the key criteria in the procurement of safe and reliable munitions. In 1999, the MOD entered into a 10-year Framework Partnering Agreement with Royal Ordnance Defence, the United Kingdom's major producer of munitions. This agreement provides the company with a schedule of business and visibility of MOD's potential future requirements such that the company can provide the MOD with munitions at world benchmark prices.
Mr. Hoon: The Volunteer Reserves have important roles in both overseas operations and the defence of the United Kingdom. In overseas operations, they already have essential and well-defined duties, and the nature of their involvement is unlikely to change. The changed security threat could, however, involve the Volunteer Reserves in taking on additional roles. I announced on 12 June the publication of a discussion document, "The Role of the Reserves in Home Defence and Security", a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House. This contained specific proposals to enhance the support that the Ministry of Defence and the armed forces, including the Volunteer Reserves, could provide to the civil authorities. This included a proposal to create reaction forces formed from Volunteer Reservists that could be called upon to assist the police in dealing with the immediate aftermath of a terrorist attack.
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made available in all service establishments, including ships and submarines at sea and, in most circumstances, arrangements can be made for daily prayer. Every effort is made to enable personnel to celebrate religious festivals and holidays, to comply with specific religious dress codes or dietary requirements, and to fast when required. However, there may be some circumstances when, in the interests of health and safety or operational effectiveness, some flexibility may be required on the part of the individual.
Mr. Hoon: The coalition has destroyed the Taliban regime and inflicted serious damage on al-Qaeda. Although remnants of both groups continue to pose a threat, coalition forcesincluding strong contingents from the United Kingdomhave had considerable success during recent operations. They destroyed weapons caches and bunker positions, obtained valuable intelligence material and denied ground to the Taliban and al-Qaeda in advance of the Loya Jirga, whose outcome was very welcome. We have made clear that the tempo and location of the campaign will vary according to the situation on the ground.
Mr. Hoon: Overall the security situation in Kabul has greatly improved since the ISAF began its operations there last December. The security situation elsewhere in Afghanistan is more uncertain. But we were pleased with the outcome of the Loya Jirga, and are confident that President Karzai will strive to address these security concerns. The international community is also working to assist the Afghan Islamic Transitional Administration with security sector reform. This includes work on a national police force, border control force and judiciary as well as the Afghan Army.
Mr. Simon Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) if he will make a statement on the involvement of British personnel in southern Oruzgan in Afghanistan for the week of 26 June to 1 July; 
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Mr. Hoon: On 23 May 2002 the United Nations' Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1413 renewing the authorisation for the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) to operate only in Kabul and its immediate environs. The combined strength of the force is determined by that requirement. The reduction in the United Kingdom's contribution to the ISAF following Turkey's adoption of the Lead Nation role on 20 June 2002 is offset by the consequent increase in the size of the Turkish contingent. The overall strength of the ISAF will therefore remain at around 5,000 personnel.
Mr. Hoon: I assume this question refers to the regrettable bombing of a wedding party on 1 July in Afghanistan. United Kingdom personnel had no contact with the US AC-130 or bomber planes at that time.
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