Britain tells women soldiers to carry condom

Britain has launched a campaign warning its female soldiers to carry condoms.

Updated: May 16, 2010, 18:01 PM IST

London: With pregnancies at the bases in
Afghanistan are on the rise, Britain has launched a campaign
warning its female soldiers to carry condoms.

Adverts in the Army`s official magazine Soldier
warned "on deployment, there`ll be 50 blokes to each woman`
and urge female squaddies, medics and administrative staff to
use a condom or "face something you really don`t want to
hear".

Officially, a "no-touching" rule bans military
personnel from having sex in a war zone.

But, according to senior officers, provided sexual
relationships are between soldiers of a similar rank and do
not impact on operations commanders often turn a blind eye.

However, if, for example, a female nurse is caught
having sex with a senior officer, both would face serious
disciplinary action and could be thrown out of the Army.

Once female soldiers become pregnant, they are flown
home immediately, because rules bar expectant mothers from
frontline service.

According to Mail today, between January 2003 and
February 2009, at least 102 British servicewomen posted to
Iraq had been sent home after it was found they were to become
mothers.

Over the same period the number of female soldiers
who had discovered they were pregnant while in theatre in
Afghanistan was 31.

Condoms are readily available to male and female
soldiers at bases such as Camp Bastion, which houses 8,500
British troops - including 700 women.

A Minister of Defence spokesperson said, "The MoD does
not encourage sexual relationships in theatre. All personnel
are expected to behave in accordance with the Armed Forces
values and standards at all times."

PTI