SNP demand clarity on MoD Police cuts

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The SNP have demanded clarity on the number of Defence Police cuts in Scotland following confirmation from the MoD that more than 1,800 defence police and guard officers are to go under reforms.

In a written statement to Parliament, the MoD revealed that the MoD Police is to be downsized from a current strength of just under 3,100 to about 2,400 by April 2016. The MoD Guard Service will be cut from just under 3,300 members to about 2,200 by April 2015.

SNP Westminster leader and Defence spokesperson Angus Robertson MP said:

“The MoD police play a vital role and are an extremely professional force, and these major cuts in manpower are deeply concerning.

“There has been concern that, ahead of this announcement, the MoD reduced their risk assessment at sensitive sites purely to justify cuts in police numbers.

“Even though the majority of people in Scotland, like the SNP, oppose nuclear weapons being stored here, they must be properly secured. Whether at Faslane, Coulport or other sensitive conventional and civil facilities it is critical that the appropriate MoD police numbers remain.

“Given the disproportionate defence cuts Scotland has faced over the last decade, which include the loss of more than 10,500 defence jobs and a £5.6bn underspend, we must now have clarity from the Ministry of Defence on where these cuts will fall.”