HC Deb 19 May 1981 vol 5 c148
14. Mr. Robert Atkins

asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he remains satisfied with progress in the development of cruise missiles.

Mr. Pattie

The development of the General Dynamics Tomahawk cruise missile which is to be deployed in Europe is the responsibility of the United States Government, but I understand that the programme is making very satisfactory progress.

Mr. Atkins

Can my hon. Friend find time to dispel the rumours published in the much unlamented magazine Now! suggesting that cruise missiles were having trouble in tests and experiments? Is he aware that the report was based on false information obtained by the GAO in the United States, which is the subject of considerable controversy between the GAO and General Dynamics?

Mr. Pattie

Our information is that the success rate in the tests has been in excess of 80 per cent., which at this stage in the life of a developing system is very acceptable.

Mr. Jay

Will the Government urge the United States and Soviet Governments to fix a date for the resumption of talks in the limitation of theatre nuclear missiles?

Mr. Pattie

I understand that conversations are in train to establish a date.

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