Gordon Brown defiant over troop helicopters

Author: Press Association

At his monthly Downing Street news conference, he said he was satisfied that
British troops had all the resources they need to complete the current
Operation Panther’s Claw offensive in central Helmand.

He said that the Government had already increased the numbers of helicopters
deployed in the country, with more due in the coming months.

“I am satisfied that Operation Panther’s Claw has the resources it needs
to be successful,” he said.

“I think the fact that it is making progress at the moment and yielding
results already shows that that is the case. I am confident that we will
bring this operation to a successful outcome.

“It is very important to recognise what the commanders are saying on the
ground, the increase we have already made in helicopters, and what we are
going to do in future months.”

His comments came after the Foreign Office Minister Lord Malloch-Brown
reignited the row over the availability of helicopters in Afghanistan, when
he said in a newspaper interview that there were “definitely” not
enough.

He was forced to issue a hurried “clarification” before Mr Brown
spoke, insisting that he believed that there was “without doubt”
sufficient resources available for current operations.

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