HC Deb 04 November 2002 vol 392 cc64-5W
Mr. Gerald Howarth

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the Royal Navy's minelaying capability is; and what types of mine are in service. [78661]

Mr. Ingram

The Royal Navy has no specialist minelaying vessels although most vessels in the fleet, including submarines, could be adapted to lay mines if deemed necessary. The Royal Navy does not have any mine stocks and has not had since 1992. Notwithstanding this, the United Kingdom retains the capability to lay mines and continues research into mine exploitation. Practice mines, used for exercises, continue to be laid in order to retain the necessary skills.

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