§ 33. Mr. Marlow
asked the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment his Department makes of the type and extent of activity of Soviet armed forces in countries other than the Soviet Union.
§ Mr. Blaker
The Soviet Union has 30 combat divisions and well over 2,000 aircraft in countries of eastern Europe outside the USSR. In Afghanistan there are a further three divisions of ground troops with supporting air forces. It is estimated that there are 20,000 Soviet troops and military advisers in 30 Third world countries; to these can be added 36,000 Cubans and 3,000 east Europeans, mostly East Germans. The Soviet navy has a worldwide capability with permanent deployments in the North Atlantic, the Caribbean, the Mediterranean and the Indian ocean.