US Missile Defence System

Defence written question – answered on 27th January 2003.

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Photo of Mr Nigel Beard Mr Nigel Beard Labour, Bexleyheath and Crayford

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment his Department has made of whether the US missile defence system could protect the UK and her allies from ballistic missile attack.

Photo of Geoff Hoon Geoff Hoon Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence

The United States missile defence programme remains evolutionary and its future architecture has still finally to be decided. The US has offered to extend missile defence coverage and make missile defence capabilities available to the United Kingdom as the evolution of the system permits, subject to appropriate political and financial arrangements. An assessment of how coverage of the UK and allies might be achieved is included in the discussion paper published by the Ministry of Defence on 9 December 2002. The UK will continue this process of assessment, not least through agreeing a technical Memorandum of Understanding with the United States to gain further insight into the missile defence programme.

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