HC Deb 15 January 2002 vol 378 cc124-5W
Mr. Swayne

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what effect the decision to purchase a tungsten armour piercing round will have on existing use of depleted uranium rounds; and if he will make a statement; [27495]

(2) what factors contributed to his decision to procure a tungsten armour piercing round; and if he will make a statement. [27494]

Dr. Moonie

The Ministry of Defence already has tungsten armour piercing rounds which are used by Challenger 2 tanks. The further purchase of tungsten ammunition has been proposed for the test and calibration firing of Challenger 2 tanks. Such a buy would have no effect on the use of depleted uranium rounds, since the rounds are used in different roles. The Charm 3 round, which incorporates a depleted uranium penetrator, is a war fighting round, while the tungsten rounds are used in the calibration of the Challenger 2 weapons system.

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