HC Deb 26 November 1958 vol 596 cc356-7
25. Mr. P. Noel-Baker

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs how many British officers and men have been attached for training duties to the Royal Jordan Army; and whether he will make a statement.

Mr. Ormsby-Gore

At the request of the Jordanian Government, a brigadier has been attached to the Jordanian Army for six months as adviser on technical and training matters, and a wing commander has been made available for one year for similar purposes with the Royal Jordanian Air Force.

As the right hon. Member will be aware, the United States are giving the Jordanian Government twelve Hawker Hunter aircraft, purchased in this country under the offshore procurement procedure. The delivery of these aircraft was completed yesterday. To help train the Jordanians in the flying and maintenance of these aircraft a small Royal Air Force mission, consisting of 8 officers and 21 men, is to be stationed at Amman.

Mr. Noel-Baker

Have the Government represented to King Hussein and his Ministers that it is more important to have political and economic reforms: o strengthen their régime than to have a further increase in the Army, which has already been taking up far too large a part of the national budget?

Mr. Ormsby-Gore

Perhaps the right hon. Gentleman did not hear me. These aircraft are a gift from the United States Government.

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