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Germany: Military Bases

Defence written question – answered on 18th January 2011.

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Photo of Angus Robertson Angus Robertson Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Defence), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Foreign and Commonwealth Office), Shadow SNP Westminster Group Leader

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what obligations he is under regarding the environmental restoration of military bases in Germany to be vacated by UK forces.

Photo of Nick Harvey Nick Harvey The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence

The Germany estate is managed as set out within the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) and its supplementary agreement. These agreements do not oblige the Secretary of State to undertake environmental restoration of military bases in Germany.

However, environmental damage caused by UK forces wilfully or by gross negligence can give rise to claims as set out within the agreements. Ministry of Defence policy is to undertake a land quality assessment for sites prior to closure.

Assets disposed of in Germany over the past 15 years has resulted in no claims being raised regarding environmental issues.

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