§ 10. Mr. Latham
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether he will make a statement on the security situation in Northern Ireland.
§ 15. Sir John Farr
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on the current security situation in Northern Ireland.
§ Mr. Hurd
Since my predecessor last answered questions on 26 July, two policemen, three soldiers and nine civilians have died in incidents arising from the security situation in the Province. So far this year, the efforts of the security forces have resulted in 508 people 1081 being charged with serious offences, including 40 with murder and 65 with attempted murder. In the same period, 188 weapons, 26,560 rounds of ammunition and 7,521 lb of explosives have been recovered. I pay tribute to the members of the security forces and the innocent civilians who have been tragically killed. I should like to pay tribute also to the dedication and bravery of all the security forces who work tirelessly to protect the people of Northern Ireland from violence.
§ Mr. Latham
As terrorist violence remains the greatest single issue affecting the United Kingdom, will my right hon. Friend confirm that improving cross-border cooperation with the Republic remains at the core of the Government's policy, whatever the ups and downs of our bilateral relations?
§ Sir John Farr
I join my right hon. Friend in congratulating the security forces on the wonderful job that they are doing. Will he re-examine cross-border security and ensure that there is absolute unanimity about cross-border problems in regard to communications between the two sides?
§ Mr. Kilfedder
Although the battle against terrorism is vital to Northern Ireland, does the right hon. Gentleman agree that it is equally important to combat ordinary criminals in the Province? Will he take steps to persuade the Chief Constable to put more police into my constituency, where crime is on the increase?