Special Forces

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 23rd April 2018.

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Photo of Baroness Cox Baroness Cox Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will clarify the basis of their policy of not commenting on the operations of British Special Forces; and what is their assessment of the extent to which that policy is compatible with the principle of parliamentary scrutiny.

Photo of Earl Howe Earl Howe The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence, Deputy Leader of the House of Lords

It is this Government's, and previous Governments', policy not to comment, and to dissuade others from commenting or speculating, about the operational activities of Special Forces because of the security implications. To prevent the inadvertent confirmation or otherwise of any information or assertion the approach has been to neither confirm nor deny, and to decline to comment when questions concerning Special Forces are posed. This is entirely compatible with the principle of Parliamentary scrutiny, which is exercised through Ministerial oversight of Special Forces operations.

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