HC Deb 07 February 1989 vol 146 c653W
16. Mr. David Davis

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will outline the Government's policy for the conventional stability talks.

Mr. Archie Hamilton

The United Kingdom and its NATO allies are currently finalising proposals for tabling at the negotiation on conventional armed forces in Europe, previously known as the conventional stability talks, which is due to begin in Vienna in March. The objective will be to eliminate capabilities for surprise attack and large-scale offensive action by measures which include the elimination, by reductions, of the current imbalances in key equipments such as tanks and artillery. A total ceiling on tanks of about 40,000, shared equally between the countries of NATO and the Warsaw pact is envisaged. Such measures will require heavily asymmetrical reductions by the Warsaw pact to reflect its higher force levels, even if the reductions in its forces announced recently are implemented.

Forward to