Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:31 pm on 14th November 1996.

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Photo of Mr Michael Portillo Mr Michael Portillo , Enfield, Southgate 3:31 pm, 14th November 1996

I would not allow British troops to go under rules of engagement that did not enable them to defend themselves sufficiently. The United States would also not allow its forces to go unless the rules of engagement were clear on that point.

The disarming of the militias is a matter not for the rules of engagement but for the objectives. As I have explained, thus far the United States has taken the clear view that the operation should be humanitarian only, and should not extend to the disarming of the militias. There is room for more debate on that, but that is the situation at the moment.