Ministry of Defence

We protect the security, independence and interests of our country at home and abroad. We work with our allies and partners whenever possible. Our aim is to ensure that the armed forces have the training, equipment and support necessary for their work, and that we keep within budget.



Secretary of State

 Portrait

Ben Wallace
Secretary of State for Defence

Shadow Ministers / Spokeperson
Scottish National Party
Angela Crawley (SNP - Lanark and Hamilton East)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Defence Procurement)
Martin Docherty-Hughes (SNP - West Dunbartonshire)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Defence Team Member)

Labour
John Healey (LAB - Wentworth and Dearne)
Shadow Secretary of State for Defence
Lord Coaker (LAB - Life peer)
Shadow Spokesperson (Defence)

Scottish National Party
Stewart Malcolm McDonald (SNP - Glasgow South)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Defence)

Labour
Lord Tunnicliffe (LAB - Life peer)
Shadow Spokesperson (Defence)

Liberal Democrat
Baroness Smith of Newnham (LDEM - Life peer)
Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Defence)

Plaid Cymru
Hywel Williams (PC - Arfon)
Shadow PC Spokesperson (Defence)

Democratic Unionist Party
Gavin Robinson (DUP - Belfast East)
Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Defence)

Liberal Democrat
Jamie Stone (LDEM - Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross)
Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Defence)
Lord Campbell of Pittenweem (LDEM - Life peer)
Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Defence)
Junior Shadow Ministers / Deputy Spokesperson
Labour
Luke Pollard (LAB - Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport)
Shadow Minister (Defence)
Chris Evans (LAB - Islwyn)
Shadow Minister (Defence)
Stephanie Peacock (LAB - Barnsley East)
Shadow Minister (Defence)
Ministers of State
Jeremy Quin (CON - Horsham)
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
Baroness Goldie (CON - Life peer)
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
Parliamentary Under-Secretaries of State
James Heappey (CON - Wells)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
Leo Docherty (CON - Aldershot)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
Scheduled Event
Tuesday 24th May 2022
14:00
Defence Committee - Oral evidence - Select & Joint Committees
24 May 2022, 2 p.m.
US, UK and NATO
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Scheduled Event
Monday 13th June 2022
14:30
Ministry of Defence
Oral questions - Main Chamber
13 Jun 2022, 2:30 p.m.
Defence (including Topical Questions)
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Scheduled Event
Wednesday 15th June 2022
09:30
Defence Committee - Private Meeting - Select & Joint Committees
15 Jun 2022, 9:30 a.m.

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Scheduled Event
Wednesday 15th June 2022
10:30
Defence Committee - Private Meeting - Select & Joint Committees
15 Jun 2022, 10:30 a.m.

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Debates
Thursday 19th May 2022
Select Committee Inquiry
Thursday 12th May 2022
Defence and Climate Change

 

  • What needs to be done to achieve the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy’s number one international …
Written Answers
Friday 20th May 2022
Ajax Vehicles: LE TacCIS Programme
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what contingency plans his Department has put in place in the event …
Secondary Legislation
Wednesday 4th May 2022
Armed Forces (Service Complaints) (Amendment) Regulations 2022
Under section 340A(1) and (2) of the Armed Forces Act 2006 (c. 52) (“the Act”), a person subject to service …
Bills
Tuesday 26th January 2021
Armed Forces Act 2021
A Bill to continue the Armed Forces Act 2006; to amend that Act and other enactments relating to the armed …
Dept. Publications
Friday 20th May 2022
11:52

Ministry of Defence Commons Appearances

Oral Answers to Questions is a regularly scheduled appearance where the Secretary of State and junior minister will answer at the Dispatch Box questions from backbench MPs

Other Commons Chamber appearances can be:
  • Urgent Questions where the Speaker has selected a question to which a Minister must reply that day
  • Adjornment Debates a 30 minute debate attended by a Minister that concludes the day in Parliament.
  • Oral Statements informing the Commons of a significant development, where backbench MP's can then question the Minister making the statement.

Westminster Hall debates are performed in response to backbench MPs or e-petitions asking for a Minister to address a detailed issue

Written Statements are made when a current event is not sufficiently significant to require an Oral Statement, but the House is required to be informed.

Most Recent Commons Appearances by Category
Mar. 28
Oral Questions
Feb. 05
Topical Questions
May. 11
Urgent Questions
May. 19
Written Statements
Mar. 03
Adjournment Debate
View All Ministry of Defence Commons Contibutions

Bills currently before Parliament

Ministry of Defence does not have Bills currently before Parliament


Acts of Parliament created in the 2019 Parliament

Introduced: 26th January 2021

A Bill to continue the Armed Forces Act 2006; to amend that Act and other enactments relating to the armed forces; to make provision about service in the reserve forces; to make provision about pardons for certain abolished service offences; to make provision about war pensions; and for connected purposes.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 15th December 2021 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 18th March 2020

A Bill to Make provision about legal proceedings and consideration of derogation from the European Convention on Human Rights in connection with operations of the armed forces outside the British Islands.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Thursday 29th April 2021 and was enacted into law.

Ministry of Defence - Secondary Legislation

Under section 340A(1) and (2) of the Armed Forces Act 2006 (c. 52) (“the Act”), a person subject to service law, or who has ceased to be subject to service law, who thinks they have been wronged in any matter relating to their service, may make a service complaint about the matter.
Under section 340A(1) and (2) of the Armed Forces Act 2006 (c. 52) (“the Act”), a person subject to service law, or who has ceased to be subject to service law, who thinks they have been wronged in any matter relating to their service, may make a service complaint about the matter. Under section 340H(1) of the Act the complainant may apply to the Service Complaints Ombudsman to investigate their complaint or related maladministration. The Armed Forces Act 2021 (c. 35) amended the date from which the minimum period to apply to the Service Complaints Ombudsman for an investigation under section 340H(1)(a) or (b) of the Act is calculated.
View All Ministry of Defence Secondary Legislation

Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Trending Petitions
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Petitions with most signatures
Petition Open
4,161 Signatures
(22 in the last 7 days)
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672 Signatures
(2 in the last 7 days)
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468 Signatures
(6 in the last 7 days)
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351 Signatures
(29 in the last 7 days)
Petition Debates Contributed
108,290
Petition Closed
6 Feb 2022
closed 3 months, 2 weeks ago

We are demanding that the government treats Gurkhas fairly and pays them the same pension as other British veterans of the same rank and service. Many Gurkhas joined the Queen’s Gurkha Army believing their pension would sustain them and their families but sadly this has not been the case.

View All Ministry of Defence Petitions

Departmental Select Committee

Defence Committee

Commons Select Committees are a formally established cross-party group of backbench MPs tasked with holding a Government department to account.

At any time there will be number of ongoing investigations into the work of the Department, or issues which fall within the oversight of the Department. Witnesses can be summoned from within the Government and outside to assist in these inquiries.

Select Committee findings are reported to the Commons, printed, and published on the Parliament website. The government then usually has 60 days to reply to the committee's recommendations.


11 Members of the Defence Committee
Tobias Ellwood Portrait
Tobias Ellwood (Conservative - Bournemouth East)
Defence Committee Chair since 29th January 2020
John Spellar Portrait
John Spellar (Labour - Warley)
Defence Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Gavin Robinson Portrait
Gavin Robinson (Democratic Unionist Party - Belfast East)
Defence Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Emma Lewell-Buck Portrait
Emma Lewell-Buck (Labour - South Shields)
Defence Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Mark Francois Portrait
Mark Francois (Conservative - Rayleigh and Wickford)
Defence Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Richard Drax Portrait
Richard Drax (Conservative - South Dorset)
Defence Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Sarah Atherton Portrait
Sarah Atherton (Conservative - Wrexham)
Defence Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Stuart Anderson Portrait
Stuart Anderson (Conservative - Wolverhampton South West)
Defence Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Derek Twigg Portrait
Derek Twigg (Labour - Halton)
Defence Committee Member since 11th May 2020
Kevan Jones Portrait
Kevan Jones (Labour - North Durham)
Defence Committee Member since 11th May 2020
Dave Doogan Portrait
Dave Doogan (Scottish National Party - Angus)
Defence Committee Member since 5th January 2022
Defence Committee: Upcoming Events
Defence Committee - Oral evidence
US, UK and NATO
24 May 2022, 2 p.m.
At 2.30pm: Oral evidence
Sir James Everard KCB CBE, former NATO Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe (DSACEUR)

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Defence Committee - Private Meeting
15 Jun 2022, 9:30 a.m.
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Defence Committee - Private Meeting
15 Jun 2022, 10:30 a.m.
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Defence Committee: Previous Inquiries
The Integrated Security, Defence and Foreign Policy Review The Security of 5G Defence contribution to the UK’s pandemic response Progress in delivering the British Army’s armoured vehicle capability Foreign Involvement in the Defence Supply Chain The Integrated Review – Threats, Capabilities and Concepts Defence and Climate Change National Shipbuilding Strategy Refresh NATO, US and UK Defence Relations National security and investment Beyond endurance? Military exercises and the duty of care Defence in the Arctic MoD support for former and serving personnel subject to judicial processes Defence in the Arctic (Sub-Committee) Armed Forces Covenant Annual Report 2018 Defence industrial policy: procurement and prosperity Departmental Priorities – Post-NATO Summit Domestic Threat of Drones Evidence from the new Defence Secretary Global Islamist Terrorism INF Treaty withdrawal UK Military Operations in Mosul and Raqqa Future anti-ship missile system Statute of limitations – veterans protection Mental Health and the Armed Forces, Part Two: The Provision of Care Work of Defence Equipment and Support Ministry of Defence Annual Reports and Accounts 2018-19 European Defence Industrial Development Programme Modernising Defence Programme Military Exercises and the Duty of Care: Further Follow-Up Procurement Update Work of the Service Complaints Ombudsman UK Defence and the Far East UK Defence and the Strait of Hormuz UK Response to Hybrid Threats Work of the Chief of Defence Staff

50 most recent Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department

11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the Government's position is on (a) Finland and (b) Sweden joining NATO; and what discussions he has had with the Governments of those countries on their potential membership of NATO.

The UK fully supports both Finland and Sweden and their decision to apply for membership. This is another welcome move by long-standing friends and follows extensive and democratic consultation within both countries. NATO is a defensive alliance and we believe both countries will fortify Northern Europe’s defences in the face of renewed threats. We look forward to integrating them into the Alliance as soon as possible.

The UK is clear that having Sweden and Finland in the alliance would be good for their own security, and good for the security of the entire Alliance. NATO, Finland and Sweden train and exercise together on a regular basis. They participate in NATO Missions and Operations. NATO has stepped up cooperation with both countries since the beginning of the crisis. They have much to contribute to our shared security.

The UK and all Allies are committed to NATO’s Open Door Policy. Enlargement is a decision for NATO itself, and NATO members are always able to discuss matters relating to the future of the Alliance. It is important that Allies, Finland and Sweden have sufficient opportunity for constructive discussions when discussing NATO accession. These discussions are an important step in the accession process.

We welcome the decision by Finland and Sweden. This is an historic moment, and the UK stands ready to offer them our every assistance during the accession process.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what his latest estimate is of the initial operational capability (IOC) date for Morpheus; how that estimate compares to his Department's original IOC date; and what assessment he has made of the impact of any potential delay on the capability needed to deploy a fully digitised warfighting division by 2030.

Delivery of the first element of the MORPHEUS project is late and the MOD is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The MOD will continue to meet all our operational requirements. MOD are actively considering how best to deliver on the Morpheus project including working with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK on potential strategies to mitigate delays to delivery. This will determine the revised Initial Operating Capability date. This work is being led by a dedicated Director Level Senior Responsible Officer.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the initial operational capability date is for the Morpheus program; and what level of confidence he has in that date being met.

Delivery of the first element of the MORPHEUS project is late and the MOD is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The MOD will continue to meet all our operational requirements. MOD are actively considering how best to deliver on the Morpheus project including working with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK on potential strategies to mitigate delays to delivery. This will determine the revised Initial Operating Capability date. This work is being led by a dedicated Director Level Senior Responsible Officer.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what contingency plans his Department has put in place in the event that Morpheus cannot be delivered by its expected initial operational capability date in order to prevent delays to the Warfighting Division by 2030.

Delivery of the first element of the MORPHEUS project is late and the MOD is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The MOD will continue to meet all our operational requirements. MOD are actively considering how best to deliver on the Morpheus project including working with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK on potential strategies to mitigate delays to delivery. This will determine the revised Initial Operating Capability date. This work is being led by a dedicated Director Level Senior Responsible Officer.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what his planned timetable is for his Department to complete a review into the Morpheus programme.

Delivery of the first element of the MORPHEUS project is late and the MOD is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The MOD will continue to meet all our operational requirements. MOD are actively considering how best to deliver on the Morpheus project including working with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK on potential strategies to mitigate delays to delivery. This will determine the revised Initial Operating Capability date. This work is being led by a dedicated Director Level Senior Responsible Officer.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many reports of (a) leaking roofs, (b) broken boilers, (c) broken cookers and (d) vermin were recorded in Single Living Accommodation, excluding Substitute Single Living Accommodation, in each year since 2010.

We are reviewing information sources. I will write to the hon. Gentleman in due course and place a copy of my response in the library of the House.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, on what date he was informed of the delays to the Morpheus programme.

The Secretary of State for Defence received an Information Note which stated that more time would be required to complete contracted deliverables in December 2020.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent discussions he has had with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK on the latest timetable for delivery of the Morpheus programme.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The delivery of Morpheus is not a requirement for Ajax to achieve Full Operating Capability

The Department retains the ambition to deliver a fully digitised warfighting division by 2030, as set out in Future Soldier.

MOD officials are in regular discussions with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK to establish a way forward.

Both the Secretary of State for Defence and the Minister for Defence Procurement are regularly updated by the Senior Responsible Owner of the Morpheus programme.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent assessment he has made of the potential impact of the latest timetable for delivery of the Morpheus programme on his Department's ability to deliver a fully digitised warfighting division by 2030, as set out in Future Soldier, published on 25 November 2021.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The delivery of Morpheus is not a requirement for Ajax to achieve Full Operating Capability

The Department retains the ambition to deliver a fully digitised warfighting division by 2030, as set out in Future Soldier.

MOD officials are in regular discussions with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK to establish a way forward.

Both the Secretary of State for Defence and the Minister for Defence Procurement are regularly updated by the Senior Responsible Owner of the Morpheus programme.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what contingency plans his Department has put in place in the event that Morpheus does not reach initial operating capability before Ajax enters service.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The delivery of Morpheus is not a requirement for Ajax to achieve Full Operating Capability

The Department retains the ambition to deliver a fully digitised warfighting division by 2030, as set out in Future Soldier.

MOD officials are in regular discussions with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK to establish a way forward.

Both the Secretary of State for Defence and the Minister for Defence Procurement are regularly updated by the Senior Responsible Owner of the Morpheus programme.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent discussions he has had with officials in his Department on the latest timetable for delivery of the Morpheus programme.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is considering the optimum route to achieve delivery of the full MORPHEUS capability. The delivery of Morpheus is not a requirement for Ajax to achieve Full Operating Capability

The Department retains the ambition to deliver a fully digitised warfighting division by 2030, as set out in Future Soldier.

MOD officials are in regular discussions with General Dynamics Mission Systems UK to establish a way forward.

Both the Secretary of State for Defence and the Minister for Defence Procurement are regularly updated by the Senior Responsible Owner of the Morpheus programme.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether he made the final decision on the selection of Samlesbury as the location for the headquarters of the National Cyber Force.

I refer the right hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 18 May 2022 to Question 46.

Ben Wallace
Secretary of State for Defence
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department is contractually obliged to incur extra costs resulting from delays to the Land Environment Tactical Communication and Information System.

The UK works closely and engages regularly with NATO on our Capability Targets. The Ministry of Defence remains able to meet its obligations to NATO.

While delivery of the first element of the MORPHEUS is running behind schedule, delivery of the other projects within the Land Environment Tactical Communication and Information System programme is progressing satisfactorily against cost and time forecasts. Any changes to costs as a result of MORPHEUS delay will be determined as part of ongoing discussions.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent discussions he has had with NATO officials on the timetable for delivery of the Land Environment Tactical Communication and Information System.

The UK works closely and engages regularly with NATO on our Capability Targets. The Ministry of Defence remains able to meet its obligations to NATO.

While delivery of the first element of the MORPHEUS is running behind schedule, delivery of the other projects within the Land Environment Tactical Communication and Information System programme is progressing satisfactorily against cost and time forecasts. Any changes to costs as a result of MORPHEUS delay will be determined as part of ongoing discussions.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, for what reason track miles on the UK's MRAP fleet has been reduced this year.

In answer to the right hon. Member's question, the UK’s MRAP fleet is defined as those purchased as Urgent Operational Requirement’s for Operations. This consists of Mastiff, Ridgeback, Wolfhound (MRW), High Mobility Tactical Vehicle (Jackal and Coyote), Foxhound and Husky.

The actual track miles in 2021-2022 were higher than the actual track miles in 2020-2021 (in both cases actual was below forecast). The forecast for 2022-2023 is higher than the actual track miles in 2020-2021 notwithstanding the imminent out of service date for Husky.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to page 6 of the Committee of Public Accounts report on Ministry of Defence Equipment Plan 2021-31, published on 11 May 2022, how his Department plans to institute a sense of control over the MOD budget.

This is the first time in five years the National Audit Office have not said the plan is unaffordable. This has been achieved through a combination of increased funding through the Spending Review, reviewing capability decisions including prudent savings measures, and rebalancing to spend more on equipment. Furthermore, the delivery of the plan remains under continuous review and the Department is in a better position to deliver any necessary adjustments to a plan that is affordable at the outset.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 10 February 2022 to Question 118592, what the required standard is for ceremonial caps.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to Question 121824 on 21 February 2022 to the hon. Member for York Central (Rachel Maskell).

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
13th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 8 February 2022 to Question 117868, what risk assessments are in place to safeguard personnel serving alongside registered sex offenders.

Defence places great importance on the appropriate management of both suspected and convicted sex offenders. Different arrangements are in place across the three Services. These may include an Employment Suitability Risk Assessment (ESRA) for those under investigation or made subject to registration under the Sexual Offences Act 2003. ESRAs provide a record of management and risk mitigation plans, are completed by the chain of command upon receipt of expert policy advice, and are updated at least every six months. The cases of those convicted of, or in receipt of a caution for a sexual offence could also be referred to the Standing Committee for Employment Risk Analysis (SCERA) who will provide advice on the appropriate action to be taken. Although appointment to roles requiring contact with vulnerable persons or under-18s is conditional upon a clean Disclosure and Barring Service certificate, additional risk assessment may be conducted by the chain of command and decisions may be reviewed by SCERA. An ‘Assignment Restriction’ note can also be placed on a subject’s personnel file within the Joint Personnel Administration System to ensure the individual does not get posted to units where it may be inappropriate to do so.

This is an area of great importance to Defence as we recognise the risk that sex offenders pose to others. We will continue to review and improve our policies and procedures to ensure that they are rigorous and that appropriate safeguarding measures are in place to enable a safe and respectful working environment.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
13th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 8 February 2022 to Question 117868 on Veterans: Violent and Sex Offender Register, what information his Department holds on potential circumstances in which serving personnel who are on the Sex Offenders Register might be in contact with vulnerable people as part of their service.

Defence places great importance on the appropriate management of both suspected and convicted sex offenders. Different arrangements are in place across the three Services. These may include an Employment Suitability Risk Assessment (ESRA) for those under investigation or made subject to registration under the Sexual Offences Act 2003. ESRAs provide a record of management and risk mitigation plans, are completed by the chain of command upon receipt of expert policy advice, and are updated at least every six months. The cases of those convicted of, or in receipt of a caution for a sexual offence could also be referred to the Standing Committee for Employment Risk Analysis (SCERA) who will provide advice on the appropriate action to be taken. Although appointment to roles requiring contact with vulnerable persons or under-18s is conditional upon a clean Disclosure and Barring Service certificate, additional risk assessment may be conducted by the chain of command and decisions may be reviewed by SCERA. An ‘Assignment Restriction’ note can also be placed on a subject’s personnel file within the Joint Personnel Administration System to ensure the individual does not get posted to units where it may be inappropriate to do so.

This is an area of great importance to Defence as we recognise the risk that sex offenders pose to others. We will continue to review and improve our policies and procedures to ensure that they are rigorous and that appropriate safeguarding measures are in place to enable a safe and respectful working environment.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
13th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 8 February 2022 to Question 117868, in what particular exceptional circumstances serving personnel listed on the sex offender register will not be discharged from the armed forces.

The Ministry of Defence’s Zero Tolerance to Sexual Offences policy came into force on 31 March 2022. Under this policy, all Service persons who are convicted of a sexual offence, or who are placed on the Sex Offenders Register, will be dismissed from the Armed Forces as a matter of course. My answer to Question 117868 refers to those few situations where a decision to discharge would be legally unsafe as it conflicts with existing law; for example, cases that are subject to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. However, we continue to review this area and are committed to making further improvements to ensure that Defence is a safe and respectful environment.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the future of the Ajax vehicle; and if he will make a statement.

I refer the hon. Gentleman to the Ajax Update I have issued today through a Written Ministerial Statement.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
13th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to his Department's Zero Tolerance approach to sexual offences published on 30 March, whether that policy will be applied retrospectively to those previously convicted of a sexual offence.

Sexual offence convictions that pre-date the introduction of the Zero Tolerance policy will be dealt with in accordance with the relevant single Service policy, which may well result, or have resulted, in discharge.

Data will be collected to understand the number of personnel discharged as a result of the policy, but it has not yet been decided whether the data will be published.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
13th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to his Department's new Zero Tolerance approach to sexual offences published on 30 March 2022, whether his Department will be (a) collecting and (b) publishing data on the number of service personnel discharged through the policy.

Sexual offence convictions that pre-date the introduction of the Zero Tolerance policy will be dealt with in accordance with the relevant single Service policy, which may well result, or have resulted, in discharge.

Data will be collected to understand the number of personnel discharged as a result of the policy, but it has not yet been decided whether the data will be published.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what data his Department holds on (a) incidences of and (b) complaints regarding military initiation rituals, in each year since 2010.

Initiation ceremonies are prohibited within Defence and are not tolerated. The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is committed to the welfare of its people and anyone who finds themselves a victim of any form of assault or harassment can access a range of support. This includes from the Service Police, from welfare officers, the chain of command, and pastoral support via the chaplaincy. Assisting Officers are also available to support people where cases are being investigated. In addition, we have an independent bullying, harassment and discrimination helpline run by trained professionals and local Diversity and Inclusion Advisers.

Independent support is also available via the charitable sector. For example, SSAFA (The Armed Forces Charity) provides help to all Service personnel and veterans with mental or emotional health concerns. SSAFA can signpost individuals to specific organisations for further targeted support. In addition, the MOD works with The Samaritans and other charities to support Serving personnel, veterans, and their families.

This detailed information requested is not held in a format that would allow an answer to be generated without incurring disproportionate costs.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, which existing surface and surveillance capabilities will be enhanced as part of Operation Isotrope.

Utilising the £50 million made available to deliver military primacy of small boat operations in the English Channel, the Home Office and Defence are seeking to bring online a range of additional surface and surveillance assets. The objective of procuring new capabilities is to ensure that all small boat crossings can be detected and intercepted such that no migrants arrive on UK shores on their own terms. Specific capabilities are subject to ongoing commercial discussions and will be disclosed in due course.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether there are any plans to extend Operation Isotrope beyond 31 January 2023.

The plan is for military primacy to end on 31 January 2023, at which point responsibility will revert to the Home Office and Border Force. Any decision on a potential extension to operation ISOTROPE will be taken nearer that time and will take into account the operational requirements and funding arrangements.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many F-35 jets his Department has ordered as of 12 May 2022.

48 Lightning aircraft are on contract. We have made provision to buy additional aircraft, and our planning assumption is that we will purchase additional Lightning aircraft, but this remains subject to negotiation.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many supply chain cyber attacks have been successfully carried out against internal (a) Ministry of Defence systems and (b) systems outsourced by his Department since January 2021.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) takes the cyber security of its supply chains very seriously. However, for security reasons we do not comment on specific details of cyber attacks, as to do so could provide useful information for our adversaries.

The Defence Cyber Protection Partnership is a joint MOD and industry initiative put in place to improve the protection of Defence’s supply chain against cyber threats. Defence contracts undergo a risk assessment to determine a cyber risk profile and what the supplier must do to demonstrate compliance with these requirements. This risk assessment and requirement to comply flows down the supplier’s supply chain until the point where no MOD information is affected.

There are also contractual requirements put on suppliers to maintain cyber security controls and to report all security incidents involving MOD assets or information to the Defence Industry Warning and Reporting Point, which then coordinates investigations as appropriate.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many supply chain cyber-attacks his Department has successfully prevented since January 2021.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) takes the cyber security of its supply chains very seriously. However, for security reasons we do not comment on specific details of cyber attacks, as to do so could provide useful information for our adversaries.

The Defence Cyber Protection Partnership is a joint MOD and industry initiative put in place to improve the protection of Defence’s supply chain against cyber threats. Defence contracts undergo a risk assessment to determine a cyber risk profile and what the supplier must do to demonstrate compliance with these requirements. This risk assessment and requirement to comply flows down the supplier’s supply chain until the point where no MOD information is affected.

There are also contractual requirements put on suppliers to maintain cyber security controls and to report all security incidents involving MOD assets or information to the Defence Industry Warning and Reporting Point, which then coordinates investigations as appropriate.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many (a) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), (b) items of communications equipment, (c) items of ear defence equipment and (d) night vision devices the UK has sent to Ukraine.

At this time, we are not releasing detail about the UAVs or communications equipment we are providing as this information could potentially assist the Russians. As I have previously informed the House, we have sent more than 4,000 night vision devices, as well as 75,000 Ear Defence items.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 28 April 2022 to Question 158858 on Ukraine: Military Aid, how many Stormer armoured vehicles have been sent to Ukraine.

The UK is sending a small number of Stormer vehicles to Ukraine. The Secretary of State for Defence will update the House on the number provided in due course.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 26 April 2022 to Question 154397 on Armed Forces: Offences against Children, how many of the 22 investigations into sexual offences against recruits at the Army Foundation College in 2021 concerned suspects who were (a) fellow recruits and (b) members of AFC staff.

In 2021 there were nine sexual offence investigations at AFC(AH) involving 22 victims who were recruits. The suspects in eight of these investigations were fellow recruits. In one investigation the suspects were three members of AFC(A) staff.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what discussions he (a) has had and (b) will have any civil society organisations on the Political Declaration on the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas prior to the final round of negotiations on that declaration.

UK Government officials have held numerous discussions with multiple civil society organisations on the Political Declaration on the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas and will continue to do so ahead of the final round of negotiations.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if his Department will publish a formal response to the Forces in Mind Trust report entitled Lives in Transition: returning to civilian life with a physical injury or condition, published on 27 April 2022.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) welcomes this Forces in Mind Trust report and will consider its analysis and recommendations as part of ongoing work to strengthen both the recovery and transition provision for Service personnel and their families.

MOD does not routinely publish a formal response to research that has not been commissioned by the Department. There are no plans to provide a formal response at this time.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 26 April 2022 to Question 154397 on Armed Forces: Offences against Children, what new measures are being put in place to protect young recruits from sexual assault in the Army Foundation College.

The Ministry of Defence and the Army have a Zero Tolerance attitude towards sexual offending in the training environment. In March 2022 The Secretary of Sate for Defence announced that Sexual offences and sexual relationships between instructors and trainees have no place in Defence, or wider society, and a zero-tolerance approach will ensure our commitment to providing a better working environment for our serving personnel is met. We are sending a clear message that the women and men of the Armed Forces must uphold our values and standards

The Army Foundation College has comprehensive measures in place to ensure a safe working environment. This is represented by Junior Soldiers' ability to raise issues or concerns in any of three ways (1) to the Military Chain of Command, (2) in person to the Independent Advisory Panel or (3) via an anonymous reporting tool to the Independent Advisory Panel. All Recruits are well briefed on the multiple methods of raising concerns; all issues raised are taken seriously and are investigated by the appropriate agency be that Civilian Police, Service Police, or the Chain of Command. Junior Soldiers are also surveyed on their experiences during their time at the AFC through the Recruit Training Survey.

AFC maintains a Supervisory Care and Safeguarding Directive which is updated on an annual basis. This Directive ensures we have immediate safeguarding mechanisms in place such as appropriate supervision, impartial assurance mechanisms, and easily accessible welfare outlets.

AFC(H) was marked as Outstanding in 2021 by Ofsted. Ofsted found that "The chief instructor, as the designated safeguarding lead, has a very good understanding of safeguarding. He is a member of the North Yorkshire Children's Safeguarding Partnership. He uses his extensive links with partner agencies to make sure that the few safeguarding incidents that are reported are investigated thoroughly and the recruits involved get the help, support and guidance they need."

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what support is available for people who are required to pay for consultant grade mental health diagnoses in order to claim compensation from Veterans UK.

A consultant's report obtained through the NHS should not incur a cost. If an individual chooses to seek this through private healthcare, that is a personal choice.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what support was made available for those in the disbanded unit at RAF Honington following allegations of sexual abuse.

The RAF offers advice and support to all personnel affected by allegations of sexual abuse through its internal welfare system. That the unit involved, the Support Weapons Flight, was disbanded is a measure of how seriously the RAF regards the matter.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what data his Department holds on the number of service personnel who redact a statement of sexual assault or rape after questioning from the Special Investigation Branch.

It will take time to collate the requested information and I will write to the hon. Member in due course.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of routinely taking forensic evidence in military hospitals, where injuries were sustained as a result of alleged military sexual assault or rape.

Defence does not have any military hospitals in the UK. Sexual Assault Referral Centres (SARCs) run by the NHS remain the primary facility for military victims/survivors of rape or sexual assault to be examined by specialist medical and forensic services. SARCs are purpose designed to be multi-functional, for interviews, forensic examinations and counselling services to be undertaken by specialist staff.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent progress he has made on the rollout of Programme Cortisone.

Programme CORTISONE will provide an enduring information capability that will fully and effectively support the delivery of evidence-based medical and dental health and healthcare. In due course, it will provide connectivity between the MOD, NHS and our NATO allies and partners.

The recent launch of the CORTISONE MyHEALTH app has for the first time given Service personnel ready access to a subset of their Healthcare record (including vaccination status) through their mobile electronic devices.

The CORTISONE Primary Medical Care (PMC) Solution is currently being developed: it will link MOD systems with National NHS systems in all 4 home countries. In parallel, other parts of the system are being developed to support areas such as occupational health, mental health, rehabilitation, and dental services. CORTISONE services are due to extend beyond Great Britain to all fixed UK Armed Forces locations overseas as well as enable the provision of healthcare services to entitled personnel on deployed operations.

The programme is designed to bring services online in stages: the PMC solution is set to go live early next year, with an estimated eighteen months rollout period across the DMS. While this will be slightly later than originally anticipated due to COVID related issues, full functionality of CORTISONE capabilities is still expected to be delivered by the end of 2025.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what processes are in place to gather forensic evidence from survivors of military sexual assault or rape where the incident takes place while overseas.

Processes can vary considerably, dependent on where the offence takes place. In places where Defence has a well-established presence and appropriate forensic examination facilities exist, standing arrangements will be in place to utilise such facilities, as this allows the best evidence to be obtained. In places where Defence does not have a well-established presence, or where there are no appropriate forensic facilities available, the Service Police Officer in command will need to decide whether an in-theatre examination should be conducted by a UK Medical Officer (MO) who is not qualified in forensic medical examination. If so, the MO will conduct the primary recovery of forensic evidence with the victim’s consent. The MO would be guided by a specially trained Service Police person in this process. The victim would then, with their consent, be recovered back to the UK to attend a Sexual Assault Referral Centre where additional evidence may be gathered and support offered.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of Veterans UK accepting diagnoses letters from clinical psychologists, rather than psychiatrists of consultant grade, when applying for compensation for mental ill health from AFCS or War Pensions.

For mental health awards under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS), the Ministry of Defence (MOD) requires evidence of the diagnosis by either a psychiatrist or a clinical psychologist, at the consultant grade. This was a recommendation of the 2013 report by the Independent Medical Expert Group (IMEG), the Advisory Non-Departmental Public Body sponsored by MOD that provides assurance that AFCS policy and decision-making reflect contemporary medical understanding on causation and progress of disorders and injuries. The Department accepted this recommendation. This approach was reviewed by the IMEG again in their report of 2020, which maintained its recommendation that diagnosis is made at the consultant level by either a clinical psychologist or psychiatrist. The next IMEG report, expected to be published in June of this year, will make any new recommendations to the Department on the approach to mental health awards under the AFCS.

No such requirement exists under the War Pension Scheme, which predates the AFCS and operates under a different burden of proof and award system.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether personnel from the Ukrainian military on training in the UK have full access to NHS services and treatments.

While training in the UK, personnel from the Ukrainian military are eligible to receive full access to NHS services and treatments, without being liable to paying the NHS surcharge.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what artillery support has been provided to the Ukrainian military.

The UK has not yet delivered any UK artillery systems or ammunition from our stockpiles. The UK has, however, been encouraging other countries to provide ammunition for existing Ukrainian systems and we’ve been facilitating the movement of that ammunition to Ukraine. The UK will provide artillery directly to Ukraine, details of these donations will be notified to the House once completed and the operational security situation allows.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 1 November 2021 to Question 64544 on Armed Forces: Housing, how many buildings on the defence estate have flammable cladding fixed to them; and how many of those buildings are (a) service living accommodation and (b) service family accommodation.

There are a total of 779 accommodation buildings on the Defence Estate which have been identified as potentially having combustible components in their external wall system. 591 are Single Living Accommodation and 188 are multi-occupied Service Family Accommodation.

25 of these buildings are categorised as high rise (six storeys and over). This figure has reduced from 27 as the remediation of Vanguard Building at HMS Nelson is complete and Peninsula Tower is no longer under investigation following finding of a site inspection.

754 of these buildings are categorised as low rise (five storeys and under). This figure is an increase from 728 given in my answer in November, as it now includes data from United States Visiting Forces sites.

All buildings have a current Fire Risk Assessment and remain legally compliant for continued occupation.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the percentage shortfalls are for each pinch point trade in the (a) Army, (b) Royal Navy and (c) Royal Air Force (i) as of 12 May 2022 and (ii) in each of the last five years.

In 2015 Ministers agreed that the Ministry of Defence (MOD) would no longer release detailed information on Pinch Points into the public domain as it could be of advantage to potential adversaries and thereby impact national security. MOD provides broad information on skills gaps as part of the Annual Report and Accounts each year, the latest edition of which can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/ministry-of-defence-annual-report-and-accounts-2020-to-2021

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many armoured vehicles of each type are (a) in the service with the Army and (b) fit for purpose as of 12 May 2022.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 7 March 2022 to Question 132161 to the Rt hon. Member for Wentworth and Dearne (Mr Healey).

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
12th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the (a) longest, (b) shortest and (c) average period of time taken was to make repairs to an armed forces accommodation property after a call out in the last period for which figures are available.

The longest, shortest and average period of time taken to make repairs to a Service Family Accommodation between November 2021 and March 2022 are shown below:

Longest 234 days (in respect to repairing a damaged fence)

Shortest 21 minutes

Average 15.9 days

The Future Defence Infrastructure Services (FDIS) Accommodation contracts came into effect on 1 April 2022. In developing the new FDIS Accommodation contracts DIO collaborated closely with key stakeholders, including the Single Services and the Families Federations, to ensure that Service families’ needs are fully considered and an improved ‘lived experience’ is provided.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, when his Department plans to institute £2.5 billion reductions to the Department's workforce costs.

As part of the department’s Annual Budget Cycle process, we are scoping options to secure c£2.5 billion of savings by 2030. This is reflected in our Spending Review 20 settlement. It is too early to state how these savings will be achieved by 2030 but following the workforce reductions set out in the Integrated Review, there will be wider non-headcount related savings identified as a result of a smaller workforce. We also have ambitious transformation and efficiencies programmes that aim to improve our systems, user experience, decision making, productivity and deliver savings.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)