HC Deb 17 November 1952 vol 507 cc121-2W
84. Mr. Burden

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Defence what further action is being taken to increase the number of helicopters available for anti-bandit operations in Malaya.

Mr. Birch

I am glad to be able to inform the House that the United States Government has agreed to advance the delivery date of 10 helicopters which were to have been allocated to the Royal Navy in 1953 under the Mutual Defence Assistance Programme. These helicopters, which are S.55s capable of carrying 10 men, are now due to arrive in this country tomorrow. After they have been assembled and the crews and maintenance staffs have had some training in their operation, they will be sent to Malaya to assist in operations against the Communist terrorists. The helicopters will be manned initially by the Royal Navy. They will operate under R.A.F. control alongside an existing R.A.F. squadron which is equipped with smaller helicopters.

Her Majesty's Government and the High Commissioner for the Federation are most grateful for the co-operation of the United States Government in this matter.