HC Deb 13 May 2003 vol 405 c154W
Dr. Julian Lewis

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what role he envisages for(a) the Royal Navy and (b) the Royal Marines in an EU rapid reaction force. [112263]

Mr. Ingram

There is no standing European Rapid Reaction Force. Under the Helsinki Headline Goal, EU member states have identified relevant forces and capabilities that might be contributed to EU-led crisis-management operations.

As regards Naval and Royal Marines forces, the United Kingdom offer includes 18 warships, as well as amphibious infantry. Committing forces to EU-led operations is a matter for national governments to decide in the light of the circumstances of each operation.