New research suggests that a huge number of British Army personnel are not considered medically fit enough to be deployed to all war zones.
Official figures were revealed by the MoD which show that nearly 18,000 personnel did not meet the requirements.
7,890 Army personnel were deemed ‘medically not deployable’ in April 2017, and a further 9,971 were classed as ‘medically limited deployable’ which means they can only be sent to specific areas.
The news raises concerns that the British Army is significantly undermanned. Forces numbers have been falling in recent years, with troops currently at 78,407 against the goal of 82,000.
Back in a January, a new Army campaign was launched which aimed to increase recruitment, but the news that soldiers would receive just a 1% payrise in March led many existing serving personnel to declare that they felt ‘undervalued’.
Mr Bowie, the MP for West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine in Scotland, spoke to Forces News and said:
“Of course it would be impossible to have every soldier fit to fight in every warzone.
“However, it is extremely worrying that only 77% of the current Army are medically able to deploy.
“Only having 60,000 troops ready to deploy is a place that I don’t think we can afford to be, given the number of jobs that the government ask them to do on our behalf.”
An Army spokesperson said:
“The Army has enough people to perform its operational requirements to keep Britain safe.
“95% of posts are filled and in the last year we’ve recruited nearly 8,000 people into a variety of posts which will give them skills for life.”
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