§ Mr. Jenkin
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many vessels have been searched by Armilla Patrol warships in each of the past five years. 
§ Mr. Ingram
The Royal Navy continues to make a valuable contribution to the Multinational Interception Force deployed in the Gulf, in accordance with UN SCR 665, to verify Iraqi compliance with UN sanctions which focus controls on Iraq's attempts to export oil illegally and import defence equipment and weapons of mass destruction related goods.
MIF operations are a coalition effort and so are not recorded nationally. However, from ships logs, we believe that in the last three years RN vessels have participated in a total of 145 boardings: 36 in 2000; 57 in 2001; and 52 to date in 2002.