Page last updated at 18:49 GMT, Monday, 22 March 2010

Troops axed in Army cutback plan

Soldiers of the 1st Batallion of the Royal Welsh on patrol in Afghanistan
It is not yet clear which troops will be affected by changes

Up to 500 soldiers are to lose their jobs in the Army as the Ministry of Defence "rebalances" troop numbers.

Some will be retrained and others asked to leave under a process it calls Manning Control Points. It is being used for the first time in eight years.

In effect it will lead to compulsory redundancies. The MoD said 300-500 troops would be affected by changes.

The MoD says the Army is near to its staffing limit of about 100,000 troops and it needed "modest adjustments".

It is understood the process will happen in the next financial year, from April 2011.

The focus will be on those soldiers who have served between 12 and 15 years.

During the past 25 years more than 3,000 soldiers have been discharged through the MCP mechanism, but it was last used in 2002.

Those asked to leave will receive a resettlement grant of £10,000.

The MoD said it would not involve those soldiers who were injured in combat.

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