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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister and First Secretary of State what the total external spend by his Department was on Private Finance Initiative consultants in each of the last four years; how many full-time equivalent consultants were employed over this period; how many billed consultancy days there were per year; what the implied average cost of each PFI consultant was; how many consultancy firms were used by his Department over this period; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Leslie: The information on the Cabinet Office's use of Private Finance Initiative consultants from 1 April 2000 is as follows. Information prior to that date can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
|Number of full time equivalent consultants(3)||(3)0.38||(4)|
|Number of billed consultancy days||82||57.5|
|Number of consultancy firms used||1||1|
(1) To date
(2) Excludes VAT
(3) Calculated on the basis of 215 working days in the year.
(4) Represents the average cost over the two year period
(5) Not available
The average cost per year for each of the two individual consultants used is £4,800, £57,721 excluding VAT
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on older people, when he expects the Cabinet Office to have completed collecting the data from Departments; and when he will write to the hon. Member for Sutton and Cheam. 
Mr. Leslie: The Cabinet Office has now collected the data from departments and is currently putting together a report for me to send to ministerial colleagues. When I have presented this to ministerial colleagues I will write to the hon. Member.
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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his estimate is of the cost of (a) ministerial cars and drivers and (b) taxis for his Department in each of the last four years. 
(7) Costs incurred from 1 April to 31 December 2001
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to the United States concerning the observance of the Geneva Convention and its protocols relating to the treatment of prisoners captured in the course of conflict in Afghanistan. 
Mr. Bradshaw: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary discussed the treatment of those detained by the US in Afghanistan with US Secretary of State Colin Powell on the telephone on 12 January and in Washington on 31 January.
Mr. Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to the Afghan Interim Government regarding provision of security across Afghanistan. 
Mr. Bradshaw: Security is a key issue for the Afghan Interim Authority (IA) and for the International Community. It is clear that a stable environment is needed for the IA to be able to function effectively and for reconstruction work to begin. We have been working closely with the IA on this issue and the UK is currently acting as lead nation of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). ISAF was mandated by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1386 (2001) to assist the IA in the maintenance of security in Kabul and its surrounding areas, so that the IA as well as UN personnel can operate in a secure environment.
There has been regular discussion with the IA on the issue of security, including between my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister and the Chairman of the IA during the latter's visit to the United Kingdom on 31 January.
Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to his answer of 22 January 2002, Official Report, columns 77677W, on stolen equipment, what the security classification was of the stolen computers and related hardware; from which Departments they came; whether breaches of security were
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deemed to have resulted in each case; whether equipment was lost outside the Department buildings; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. MacShane: The computers and hardware were stolen from South East Asian Department, South and South East Asia Research Group, Information Department, Human Rights Policy Department, Global Citizenship Unit, IT Support Services, Eastern Department, Finance Branch, Latin America and Caribbean Department, Middle East Department, Management Consultancy Services, IT Strategy Unit, Research Analysts, Personnel Command Training and Conference and Visits Group.
Vera Baird: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking on behalf of the UK to ensure that when the International Criminal Court begins to function it will do so with (a) an independent prosecutor, (b) financial independence and (c) without risk of political interference from the UN Security Council. 
Mr. MacShane: The arrangements for the election of an independent Prosecutor for the International Criminal Court, for the funding of the Court and the Court's relationship with the UN Security Council are set out in the Rome Statute of the ICC. The United Kingdom took a significant part in the drafting of that statute and was among the 139 states subsequently to sign it. The UK ratified the Rome Statute on 4 October 2001.
The Prosecutor will be elected by secret ballot of the Assembly of States Parties. In addition, Article 53 provides that the Prosecutor is independent with respect to the initiation and conduct of investigations and prosecutions, subject to review, in limited circumstances, by the Pre-Trial Chamber.
The budget of the Court will be provided through Assessed Contributions levied from states which have ratified the Rome Statute. The precise United Kingdom share will not be determined until the Court comes into existence.
Vera Baird: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will ensure that the International Criminal Court, once functional, has retrospective jurisdiction over defendants involved in unlawful international events. 
Mr. MacShane: Article 11 of the Rome Statute of the ICC deals with the temporal jurisdiction of the Court. The Court will have no jurisdiction in respect of crimes committed before the entry into force of the Statute.
Vera Baird: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what involvement the United Kingdom has in the practical preparations for the staffing of the International Criminal Court; and what steps have been taken to ensure that it is adequately and expertly staffed; 
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Mr. MacShane: The United Kingdom has been an active participant in the eight (to date) Preparatory Commissions (Prepcoms) for the ICC. The election of Judges and senior Officers of the Court will be a matter for the Assembly of States Parties, which will meet once 60 states have ratified or acceded to the Rome Statute of the Court. 49 states, including the UK, have done so to date. The staffing of the Court has been discussed at the Prepcoms in the context of the Court's budgetary requirements. Work is continuing on this. The appointment of suitably qualified and expert staff will ultimately be the responsibility of the Registrar of the ICC.
Vera Baird: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what steps he is taking to encourage states which have not yet ratified the Statute establishing the International Criminal Court to do so; 
(3) what additional steps he will take to hasten the transition of the International Criminal Court into a working court. 
Mr. MacShane: The United Kingdom will continue to urge other states, in our bilateral contacts and in partnership with other EU and associated states (in pursuance of the EU Common Position on the ICC) to ratify the Rome Statute. 49 states have ratified to date, the 60th ratification will cause the Court to come into existence. The United Kingdom will liaise with the Officers of the Court, when they are appointed, to determine what practical assistance we may offer in facilitating the smooth commencement of the Court's activities.
Vera Baird: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether he is making representations to the USA in respect of its ratification of the Statute of the International Criminal Court. 
Mr. MacShane: Officials are in regular contact with the US Administration in respect of this issue. We have also joined with EU partners in a written demarche to Secretary of State Powell on 30 October and a verbal demarche on 20 December 2001, both in support of the EU Common Position on the ICC of June 2001.
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