Magazine article Public Finance

One in 14 Soldiers Is Unfit to Fight

Magazine article Public Finance

One in 14 Soldiers Is Unfit to Fight

Article excerpt

Up to 7,000 of Britain's soldiers are unfit to fight, leaving frontline troops 'dangerously exposed,' according to figures obtained by the Conservatives.

The Ministry of Defence confirmed that ten battalions recently sent to Iraq and Afghanistan left 400 sick or injured soldiers behind in the UK

Last week a critical Commons defence select committee report stressed that the forces were under-resourced and losing large numbers of experienced personnel fed up with constantly being away from home.

The 'serious worries' of the committee are reflected in the new figures, obtained by Tory MP Patrick Mercer, which show that one in 14 infantry soldiers is 'unfit to deploy'. The figures, given in a written statement, are taken from ten battalions deployed in Iraq or Afghanistan now and last year. They show that Second Battalion Yorkshire Regiment had to leave 50 long-term sick troops in the UK while in Afghanistan. …

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