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Conflict Prevention

Mrs. Gillan: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what measures his Department proposes to make conflict prevention and peacekeeping more effective. [1833]

Peter Hain: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is engaged on a number of fronts to make international conflict prevention and peacekeeping more effective. We are working to push conflict prevention up the international agenda with GB, UN and EU partners; to help make international organisations better at peacekeeping and conflict prevention; to assist other countries with their peacekeeping efforts; and to improve our own contribution.

We support the UN Secretary-General's efforts to move the UN:


The Government have established two cross- departmental conflict prevention pooled funds to help maximise our contribution to conflict prevention and peacekeeping work. The pools—one for sub-Saharan Africa and one for the rest of the world—are jointly managed by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Department for International Development and the Ministry of Defence. Their purpose is to produce a joint strategy to facilitate collective decision making on where

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and how to focus our conflict prevention efforts, enabling Government to identify ways in which these Departments, by working more closely together, can make more a effective contribution.

We are also putting mechanisms in place to improve the effectiveness of our national contributions to peacekeeping. These involve a rapid deployment capability for civilian police and on-call arrangements for military personnel.

ABM Treaty

Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the Government's policy is on the United States Government's intention to abrogate the anti-ballistic missile treaty; and if the future of the ABM treaty was discussed with the United States Administration delegation at the Gothenburg summit in June. [1823]

Mr. Bradshaw: The future of the anti-ballistic missile treaty is first and foremost a matter for the US and Russia as parties to the treaty. We welcome US and Russian consultations on strategic issues, and were encouraged by the outcome of the summit between Presidents Bush and Putin and by both sides' commitment to further constructive discussions on the issues.

The future of the ABMT was not discussed at the EU-US summit in Gothenburg.

Mr. Caton: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what work has been done by his Department to assess the global reaction to a unilateral withdrawal from the ABM treaty by the US. [2297]

Mr. Bradshaw: The future of the anti-ballistic missile treaty is first and foremost a matter for the US and Russia as parties to the treaty. Presidents Bush and Putin agreed at their recent summit that the two sides should continue their consultations on missile defence and the ABMT. It is therefore premature to make such an assessment.

US National Missile Defence

Mr. Caton: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the Russian Government concerning the proposed US National Missile Defence system. [2295]

Mr. Bradshaw: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has not yet discussed missile defence with his Russian counterpart. Missile defence is of course the subject of regular exchanges with Russia at all levels.

Export Controls

Roger Casale: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what goods, controlled by the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies, were approved for export to Iraq in 2000. [3073]

Mr. Bradshaw: Following consultation with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Ministry of Defence, the Department of Trade and Industry approved on 21 July 2000 a licence to export spare parts for use

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in Iraq's electricity sector under the UN Oil for Food programme. The spare parts included a roller bearing, which is controlled by the Wassenaar Arrangement in line with existing Security Council resolutions. The export of the goods to Iraq was approved by the UN Sanctions Committee. The announcement of this export is in line with the Government's commitment to increasing transparency in the field of export controls.

Death Certificates

Mr. Rooney: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the procedure is for issuing a death certificate for a British citizen who dies abroad. [2484]

Mr. Bradshaw: Deaths of British nationals overseas may be recorded in the consular register of deaths held by the British mission in the country where the death occurred (with the exception of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Republic of Ireland, South Africa, Zimbabwe and the Overseas Territories; deaths which have occurred in Pakistan prior to 19 February 1972 cannot be registered). For a death to be registered the Registration Officer must be satisfied as to the national status of the deceased and the following original documentation presented in support of the application: the civil death certificate issued by the local authorities; evidence of the deceased's claim to British nationality, eg full UK birth certificate or British passport or certificate of naturalisation or registration.

A consular fee is levied for this service.

Entry Clearance

Mr. Rooney: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when the applicant KB under Dhaka reference 59569 will be called for interview. [2487]

Mr. Bradshaw: It is not our practice to disclose details of individual entry clearance cases in a public forum. The Joint Entry Clearance Unit will write to my hon. Friend the Member for Bradford, North about this case in the next few days.

Norwegian Whaling

Mr. Peter Bottomley: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when and how the Government have opposed Norwegian whaling (a) inside and (b) outside the International Whaling Commission; how the Government have sought to get the Norwegian Government to curtail whaling activities; and whether Norway is permitted to survey minke whale populations in United Kingdom waters. [2078]

Mr. Morley: I have been asked to reply.

The UK Government take every appropriate opportunity, both within the International Whaling Commission and in other relevant forums, to express their opposition to Norwegian whaling and to persuade Norway to cease its whaling activities. After careful consideration the Government have refused Norway's recent application to survey minke whale populations in UK waters as we are not convinced that it is in the best interests of whale conservation.

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INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

World Trade Organisation

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will list those Least Developed Countries which are members of the World Trade Organisation; and what progress has been made with the establishment of a fast-track accession process to the WTO. [2289]

Nigel Griffiths: I have been asked to reply.

Thirty Least Developed Countries (LDCs) are already WTO members. These are Angola, Bangladesh, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, The Gambia, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Haiti, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Myanmar, Niger, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Solomon Islands, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, and Zambia. Another nine LDCs are currently negotiating to join the WTO (Bhutan, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Laos, Nepal, Samoa, Sudan, Vanuatu, and Yemen) and are at different stages of the process.

At the Third United Nations Conference on Least Developed Countries in May 2001, the EU (in a joint statement with US, Canada and Japan), reinforced its support for the expedition of the WTO accession processes for the nine LDCs currently negotiating to join. The statement underlined our interest in streamlining the LDC accession process; seeking reasonable market access commitments; making full use of WTO Provisions for LDCs and strengthening technical assistance and capacity building. I have today placed a copy of the joint EU/ Canada/Japan/US statement in the Library of the House.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what progress has been made in her Department's commitment to increase its support for WTO capacity building projects. [2288]

Clare Short: Our recent White Paper on International Development (Making Globalisation Work for the Poor) commits the Government to doubling their support for trade related capacity building to £30 million over the next three years. A number of initiatives have been taken forward since the publication of the White Paper in December. These include:






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