To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how the Government exercised its formal oversight of US use of Diego Garcia between 2001 and 2008.
10 November 2014
As my honourable friend is aware, use of the defence facility in Diego Garcia is governed by the Exchange of Notes between the UK and US, which places treaty obligations on both parties. These Notes provide that, as regards the use of the facility in normal circumstances, the US Commanding Officer and the Officer in Charge of the United Kingdom Service element shall inform each other of intended movements of ships and aircraft. In other circumstances, they provide that the use of the facility shall be a matter for the joint decision of the two Governments. Oversight of US activities between 2001 and 2008 was thus exercised: through the exchange both of routine information, via the Governments’ representatives in Diego Garcia; and, where non-routine matters were concerned, through regular dialogue between the two Governments, including by means of annual political-military discussions between senior officials.