American Bases

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 3rd May 1983.

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Photo of Mr Allan Roberts Mr Allan Roberts , Bootle 12:00 am, 3rd May 1983

asked the Secretary of State for Defence for what reason he failed to include the United States base in Liverpool in his list of United States bases in the United Kingdom; and what purpose the base at Liverpool port fulfils.

Photo of Mr Peter Blaker Mr Peter Blaker , Blackpool South

There is no United States "base" in Liverpool. There is a United States army office, which handles shipping documentation.

Photo of Mr Allan Roberts Mr Allan Roberts , Bootle

Does the Minister expect the people of Merseyside to believe that this facility, which is constantly in evidence in the docks, is there merely to bring in tins of salmon and condensed milk? Will he give a categoric assurance that nuclear materials and equipment are not coming into Liverpool docks? Will he state categorically that nuclear materials and equipment in connection with the siting of cruise missiles in Great Britain have not already arrived in this country?

Photo of Mr Peter Blaker Mr Peter Blaker , Blackpool South

As the hon. Gentleman knows, we never say whether nuclear equipment and weapons are or are not present at a particular location. The staff at this installation consist of two United States army personnel and six United Kingdom civilians, including one cleaner.