HC Deb 19 December 1945 vol 417 cc1326-7
42 Mr. Driberg

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Air if he is aware that nearly 1,500 R.A.F. personnel are or were recently stationed in the Azores, and that the duties in connection with such specialist services as air-sea rescue, staging posts, etc., are carried out by fewer than 500 of these; and how soon these 1,000 redundant or unemployed airmen are to be repatriated.

Mr. Strachey

As my hon. Friend knows, it would not be in accordance with the present policy to give the figures for our forces in particular places overseas. We are steadily bringing down the strength of the Royal Air Force in the Azores. It is part of Coastal Command's contribution to the trooping programme to bring airmen home from the Azores as soon as possible.

Mr. Driberg

Can my hon. Friend say how soon that will be, in view of the fact that the figures for the Azores have now been given on the Order Paper?

Mr. Strachey

I have not confirmed any such figures, but airmen are steadily being brought home from the Azores.