HC Deb 20 May 2002 vol 386 cc11-2W
Mr. Gray

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many Gurkhas have accompanied postings; what plans he has to expand the Gurkha units; and what recent discussions he has had with the Prime Minister of Nepal about Gurkha pensions. [57028]

Mr. Ingram

[holding answer 16 May 2002]: There are currently 906 Gurkha personnel in accompanied service postings.

There is a requirement to recruit 230 Gurkhas per year to maintain present force levels. While there are no plans to increase Gurkha strength, we continue to look at ways to best deploy this manpower.

The issue of Gurkha pensions was, however, raised briefly by the Nepalese Prime Minister at the end of a meeting I attended with the Prime Minister and Secretary of State for International Development on Monday 13 May.

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