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INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Developing Countries (Electricity)

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what projects she has financed in the last three years to improve electricity supply in developing countries, indicating the cost of each and which use renewable technologies. [54614]

Clare Short: We are all increasingly providing financial assistance to our partner countries via payments through their central budgets in collaboration with other donors. Under these circumstances it is not possible to separate out the contributions of any one donor to any particular sector.

We do, however, still have a number of ongoing specific energy projects in some countries. Brief details of our major country projects, together with details of our research projects in this sector and a full list of our activities in the energy sector over the past three years will be placed in the Library of the House.

We are also contributors to the multi-donor technical co-operation facilities (ESMAP and PPIAF) which have activities in the energy sector, some of which include renewables. Brief details of this work are also available in the Library of the House.

Fraud and Corruption

Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the estimated level of losses to fraud and corruption was in (a) her Department's Vote 1 budget and (b) her Department's Vote 2 budget for (i) 1999–2000 and (ii) 2000–01. [54720]

Clare Short: Losses in DFID's Vote 1 and Vote 2 accounts were disclosed separately in the Losses Statement of the Appropriation Accounts 1999–2000 and the Accountability Notes of the Resource Accounts 2000–01.

The estimated level of losses to fraud and corruption in DFID's Vote 1 budget in 1999–2000 and 2000–01 was £21,000 and £13,000 respectively. Of these amounts, £11,000 and £8,000 can be attributed to the theft of assets, which, in line with Treasury guidance, has been classified as involving departmental staff either directly or through collusion.

There was no loss in DFID's Vote 2 budget in 1999–2000, but a loss of £0.2,000 was recorded in 2000–01.

Details of suspected or proven fraud are provided to the Treasury on an annual basis. The annual report that the Treasury prepares on fraud is deposited in the Libraries of both Houses.

Refurbishment

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development when she was informed that sapele timber had been used in the refurbishment of 1 Palace Street. [56044]

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Clare Short: Standard DFID procedures were followed for this refurbishment project. These do not require me to be advised.

FOREIGN AND COMMONWEALTH AFFAIRS

Israel

Mr. Ancram: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to his oral statement of 29 April 2002, Official Report, column 668, on Israel, what risk assessment has been made regarding the protection of the deployed supervisory wardens from radical groups in the west bank. [54622]

Mr. Straw: An assessment has been made of the monitors' security situation in Jericho. I judge this to be satisfactory in the circumstances, though it is plainly not possible to eliminate all risk. Measures have been put in place to enhance the level of protection afforded to the team. They are kept under constant review.

Mr. Ancram: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to his oral statement of 29 April 2002, Official Report, column 668, on Israel, what contingency plans are in place to ensure the evacuation of the British personnel deployed as supervisory wardens. [54621]

Mr. Straw: Contingency plans are in place for the evacuation of personnel deployed as monitors in Jericho, as they are for staff at our consulate-general in Jerusalem. They are kept under constant review.

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with (a) the UN and (b) other Governments on a role for international forces in peacekeeping between Israelis and Palestinians. [55575]

Mr. Bradshaw: My right hon. the Foreign Secretary is in constant contact with his US and European counterparts about the middle east peace process. He also has regular contact with the UN Secretary General and the parties. These discussions cover the full range of issues including the role of the international community in helping Israel and the Palestinian Authority achieve a ceasefire and the resumption of negotiations.

There is broad international consensus that an international peacekeeping operation cannot work without the agreement of both parties; a ceasefire to maintain; and a parallel political process. These do not now exist, so the immediate priority must be to help rebuild confidence and create such conditions for progress.

Fraud

Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the estimated level of losses to fraud and corruption was in (a) his Department's Vote 1 budget and (b) his Department's Vote 2 budget for (i) 1999–2000 and (ii) 2000–01. [54710]

Mr. Bradshaw: The information is as follows.

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Losses to fraud and corruption
£

April 1999 to March 2000April 2000 to March 2001
Vote 1 budget
FCO fraud11,18316,326
Sum recovered11,18315,553
Net loss0773
Vote 2 budgetNil

Middle East

Mr. McGrady: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations the Government have made to the International Criminal Court regarding human rights abuses as a result of the on-going conflict in the middle east; and if he will make a statement. [54989]

Mr. MacShane: The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court will enter into force on 1 July 2002. The Court, which will formally come into existence on that date, will have no powers to investigate crimes retrospectively.

Belarus

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to the Belarusian Government about the Iraqi military delegation visit to Minsk in October 2001; what reports he has received about (a) the aim and (b) the outcome of the visit; and if he will make a statement. [55154]

Mr. Bradshaw: We are aware of press reports from October 2001 that an Iraqi delegation visited Belarus to receive military training and purchase arms. We view any report of actual or proposed transfers of weapons or weapons-related materials to Iraq—by any country—with serious concern. We have no doubt about Iraq's desire to acquire sophisticated weapons systems. We have expressed our concern about the October 2001 reports to the Belarusian Government and raised our concerns at the United Nations Iraq Sanctions Committee. We made clear in both instances our expectation that the Belarusian Government will continue to take all possible steps to ensure that arms sales and other transactions that violate UN Security Council resolutions will not take place.

Ministerial Accommodation

Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what publicly owned accommodation is made available to him in his official role; how many nights he has been in residence at each of these properties in the last 12 months; and what the total cost was of maintaining each of these properties in the last 12 months. [55093]

Mr. Straw [holding answer 9 May. 2002]: The official London residence of the Foreign Secretary is at 1 Carlton Gardens. I use the day rooms on the ground and first floors for meetings, receptions and entertaining. There is a self-contained residential apartment on the upper floor, which I have never occupied. This was occupied by my

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right hon. Friend the Member for Livingston (Mr. Cook) when he was Foreign Secretary, and continues to be occupied by him, as President of the Council. As Foreign Secretary he was 35 nights in residence between 1 April 2001 and 7 June 2001. Total maintenance costs during this period were £2,790.68. From 8 June 2001 the costs of the residential apartment are to be met by the Privy Council Office. I do have both official and private use of Chevening House, Sevenoaks. This is owned by a private trust.

Zimbabwe

Mr. Jack: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs under what circumstances (a) British nationals and (b) British passport holders would receive official help to leave Zimbabwe. [55597]

Mr. Bradshaw: There are approximately 26,000 British nationals registered with the British High Commission in Harare. The British High Commission in Harare stands ready to offer what assistance they can to British nationals of all categories who seek their help to leave Zimbabwe.

Mr. Jack: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if his Department has drawn up contingency plans to help UK citizens and UK passport holders evacuate Zimbabwe in the event of a breakdown of law and order there. [55596]

Mr. Bradshaw: We have a Civil Contingency Plan in place for Zimbabwe, as we do for many other countries. This is under constant review. Any evacuation would be a last resort and by whatever means available at that time.


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