Government warned over 'real threat' of missile attack

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The Independent Online
THE GOVERNMENT is being 'dangerously short-sighted' in its refusal to accept that Britain will soon face a very real threat of missile attacks, a defence expert warned in a report yesterday.

Dr Robin Ranger, research associate at Lancaster University's Centre for Defence and International Security Studies, said the proliferation of ballistic missiles to unstable and unreliable regimes was moving at such a rate that the UK could be targeted within the foreseeable future. And he warned the Government to counter the threat in its defence planning.

'The view expressed in the 1994 Defence White Paper - that while the threat to UK forces operating overseas is real, any such threat to the UK itself is remote - is in fact dangerously short-sighted,' Dr Ranger said.

'All the evidence suggests that the range of a variety of such missiles - in the hands of unstable and unreliable regimes - is being extended in a manner which means that the UK itself will potentially be subject to such threats within a foreseeable timescale.'

Timely Defence Against Missiles; Dr Robin Ranger; published by the Centre for Defence and International Security Studies, Lancaster University.