Commenting on the criticism of the MoD by the coroner in the inquest into the death of British solider Corporal Mark Wright in an Afghan minefield in 2006, Liberal Democrat Shadow Defence Secretary, Nick Harvey said:
"The catalogue of failures recorded by the coroner is another shattering blow to the credibility of the MoD.
"Coroner Andrew Walker is absolutely right to describe these shortages of basic equipment and helicopter support as shameful.
"Lives are being lost because of the shortage of appropriate helicopter support in Afghanistan, yet the Government’s plans for more helicopters are in confusion and disarray.
"John Hutton could make a useful start as Defence Secretary by withdrawing the remaining British troops from Iraq, which would go some way towards easing the terrible overstretch our forces are suffering operating on two fronts.
"There is an urgent need for a new defence review to reassess spending priorities."