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Plan Colombia

Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the value of Plan Colombia; and what plans he has to promote a similar plan in relation to Afghanistan. [28111]

Mr. MacShane: Plan Colombia is the Colombian Government's programme to tackle Colombia's interconnected problems of violence, social and economic inequality, abuse of human rights and drugs cultivation and trafficking. It is designed to produce results over a number of years.

Neither the UK nor the EU has made a contribution to the plan. The UK is contributing to a separate EU package of assistance to Colombia worth euro 300 million over the period 2001–06. The package focuses on measures that support human rights, long-term economic and social development, including alternative development, and an end to violence.

The Government currently have no plans to promote a similar plan in relation to Afghanistan.

Gibraltar

David Hamilton: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if it is Her Majesty's Government's intention to reach an accommodation with Spain about Gibraltar irrespective of the will of the citizens of Gibraltar. [28265]

Peter Hain: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs gave to the hon. Member for South Staffordshire (Sir P. Cormack) in this House on 27 November 2001, Official Report, column 822.

David Hamilton: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what Her Majesty's Government's policy is on a referendum of the residents of Gibraltar on (a) independence, (b) integration and (c) joint sovereignty. [28266]

Peter Hain: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave to the Member for the Isle of Wight (Mr. Turner) on 19 November 2001, Official Report, column 26W.

Mr. Hood: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if the Government will put forward proposals for further integration of Gibraltar into the United Kingdom. [28263R]

Peter Hain: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Knowsley, South (Mr. O'Hara) on 20 November 2001, Official Report,

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column 187W. Discussions under the Brussels Process have not included the possibility of integration of Gibraltar into the UK.

Mr. Hood: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on discussions on independence for Gibraltar. [28264R]

Peter Hain: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Knowsley, South (Mr. O'Hara) on 20 November 2001, Official Report, column 187W. A copy of the joint press communiqué issued by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State and the Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs when they met under the Brussels Process in Barcelona on 20 November has been placed in the Libraries of the House. Independence for Gibraltar is not an issue being discussed under the Brussels Process.

Mr. Laxton: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what possibilities Her Majesty's Government are studying for the future status of Gibraltar similar to Ceuta and Mellia. [28267]

Peter Hain: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Knowsley, South (Mr. O'Hara) on 20 November 2001, Official Report, column 187W. Discussions under the Brussels Process have not included the possibility of integration of Gibraltar into the UK.

Mr. Laxton: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what plans he has for a referendum to be held in Gibraltar on an agreement with Spain about the status of Gibraltar. [28268]

Peter Hain: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Thurrock (Andrew Mackinlay) on 12 December 2001, Official Report, column 853W.

Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what public statements have been made concerning Gibraltar by British diplomats in the last 12 months. [28269]

Peter Hain: British diplomats have set out the Government's policy on many occasions in the last 12 months, including international fora.

James McLintock

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) if he has been informed by the Government of Pakistan (a) on what charges and (b) in which prison James A. McLintock is being held; [28123]

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Mr. Bradshaw: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has not been in contact with the Pakistani authorities about this case.

Staff at the British High Commission in Islamabad first sought information about a detained British national, later identified as James A. McLintock, on 21 December 2001. British officials saw Mr. McLintock on 4 and 5 January 2002. Confirmation of his health and welfare was made and this information was relayed to his family by FCO staff in London on 9 January. Access to Mr. McLintock was given again on 16 January 2002 and more information was passed to his family. Mr. McLintock is being held in Islamabad and has not been charged. Our staff have not requested legal representation, but instead have advised the Pakistanis that if Mr. McLintock is charged he must have legal representation. We continue to be in consultation with the Pakistani authorities about Mr. McLintock's situation. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary would, of course, be happy to see the hon. Member about this case if that would be helpful.

Sellafield

Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list the representations (a) made to and (b) received from the European Commission by his Department in respect of the Sellafield MOX plant since 1 January. [19407]

Margaret Beckett: I have been asked to reply.

Further to my answer to my hon. Friend on 10 December 2001, Official Report, column 681W, I understand that the European Commission wrote to the Department of Trade and Industry on 20 November 2001 about whether state aid had been granted to Sellafield MOX plant. The DTI does not believe that any state aid has been given to the plant and replied on 7 January.

TRADE AND INDUSTRY

Coal Industry

10. Mr. Grogan: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on Government policy regarding the coal industry. [25554]

Mr. Wilson: Coal plays a key role in meeting UK energy needs. Future policy in relation to the coal industry will be informed by the PIU energy review, the Clean Coal Technology Review, and the House of Lords report into security of supply.

Energy Policy

11. Mr. Simmonds: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what recent discussions her Department has had with the European Commission on national energy policy. [25555]

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Mr. Wilson: This Department is in continual contact with the Commission on a wide range of European energy issues affecting national energy policy. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry met Mrs. de Palacio on 29 November last year when they discussed energy liberalisation, the Commission's Green Paper on security of energy supply, coal subsidies, the need to ensure fair competition in the context of ownership by vertically integrated companies, and nuclear energy including safety standards. I attended the Energy Council on 4 December during which discussion focused mainly on the internal EU market in electricity and gas and on the Commission's Green Paper on security of energy supply. The Council also discussed the proposal for a directive on the energy performance of buildings, on climate change and on the justification or otherwise for continued state aid to the coal industry after expiry of the European Coal and Steel Community treaty.


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