» Friday, October 9, 2009


Asked whether the fact that the Prime Minister would be making a statement on Afghanistan on Wednesday meant that a decision had been taken on any extra troops and an agreement was in place for the financing of equipment, the PMS said that as we had made clear a number of times this week, the Prime Minister was open-minded on the question of whether more troops were needed in Afghanistan and whether we should send more troops.

There was a meeting of NSID yesterday and the Prime Minister continued to consult closely with allies. We had always said that more troops would have to be subject to a number of criteria, including the feasibility of sending the right equipment, the issue of burden sharing, the right strategy internationally and particularly the issue of Afghanisation which the President and the Prime Minister talked about yesterday.

It was the right thing to do to make any statement about troop numbers within the context of a statement to the House of Commons first. Asked whether the reported figure of 500 extra troops was wrong, the PMS said that we had not given out any number in terms of a possible troop uplift.

Asked what the Prime Minister s reaction was when he learned that General Sir Richard Dannatt had been in conversation with David Cameron over a period of several weeks, the PMS replied that the Prime Minister had said on a number of occasions that Sir Richard Dannatt had served this country with great distinction. He had personally thanked him for his contribution over many years.

Now that Sir Richard Dannatt had retired, it was not for the PMS to comment on any personal plans or decisions that he made.

original source.

Briefing took place at 11:00 | Search for related news

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