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Mr. James Wray: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what representations his Department has made to French officials on the situation at the Sangatte refugee camp in Northern France. 
Angela Eagle: The United Kingdom and French Governments have developed close working relationships at all levels on bilateral asylum and immigration issues. There are frequent discussions of the problems of cross Channel illegal immigration and the situation at Sangatte in particular.
My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister and the French Prime Minister discussed Sangatte and the situation in Northern France during the United Kingdom/French Summit on 29 November 2001. My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary (Mr. Blunkett) also discussed the issue with French Social Affairs Minister Elizabeth Guigou on 21 January 2002, and has raised it on a number of occasions with Interior Minister Daniel Vaillant. Officials from both sides are in regular contact on the issue and a Cross Channel Commission subgroup is dealing specifically with the issues surrounding Sangatte. The group met in Paris on 13 February and in London on 18 March to discuss possible ways forward. A further meeting is due to take place in Paris shortly.
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19 Apr 2002 : Column 1264W
Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many special advisers were employed by him (a) between 1 May and 31 December 1997 and (b) in each year from 1998 to 2001 inclusive; and what the total amount spent on special advisers by the Department was in each of those years.